June 10, 1933
Class Day exercises and meetings of alumnae opened Vassar’s 67th commencement exercises. Mrs. Henry Morganthau Jr. (Elinor Fatman ’13) spoke at the alumnae luncheon, and an evening production of A Winter’s Tale was followed by the senior bonfire.
The speaker at baccalaureate exercises the following day was the Rev. Dr. Vivian T. Pomeroy, pastor of the First Congregational Church in Milton, MA, who spoke on “Time and Experience.” Welcoming what he saw as a shift in young people away from rushed accumulation of experiences at the expense of the contemplation and comprehension of them, Pomeroy declared that “Nothing can make people really more intellectually stupid than a progressive accumulation of facts without wisdom to interpret the facts and extract their vital meaning.”
In his commencement address on June 12, President MacCracken emphasized to the 240 graduates, their families and guests that the goals of fulfillment in life were reached both gradually and in community with others. “Education,” he said, “is a continuous cycle and not something that can be achieved all at one time or in a few years.” MacCracken pointed to the community of faculty that relied on the advice and knowledge of others and to the national collaboration in research of foundations and associations in seeking mutual and societal enlightenment. “We must leave fulfillment to time,” he concluded. “We must not be the judge of our own work. We may criticize our own work, but we must remember that our criticism is suspended.”
The chairman of the board of trustees, Helen Kenyon ’05, announced that gifts to the college totaled $228,916 and that the endowment had increased by more than $120,000. Gifts from alumnae were $94,400, of which $46,000 were direct gifts and $48,400 were through the alumnae fund.
President Roosevelt, whose term as trustee would have expired in 1933, was elected to the board as an honorary life trustee.
In the afternoon, a forum on the economy began under the direction of cultural historian and activist, Associate Professor of History Caroline F. Ware ’20. The discussants included Ware’s husband, Harvard economist Gardiner C. Means, a critic of what he called “collective capitalism,” socialist Dr. Walter Polikov, the director of United Mine Workers’ department of engineering and the English economist and pioneer social services theorist Eveline Burns. The New York Times