The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, Digital Edition > My Day
My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt

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NEW YORK, Tuesday—The National Jewish Hospital in Denver, Colo. which is marking its 50th year, is unusual in its operation. Nearly 50,000 patients have been treated in this hospital and I have always liked its motto: "None may enter who can pay—none can pay who enter."

Because it is a Jewish hospital, one would expect that the patients would be largely Jewish. Yet, 65 percent of the patients have been non-Jewish, and they have come from 6,000 communities throughout the United States.

As the hospital begins on its second half-century and looks forward to caring for those who have tuberculosis and cannot afford to pay for proper care, I think it can look back with pride on its record and hold high hopes for the future. You and I can be glad that such an organization exists to serve our fellow citizens.

Another institution that I have been interested in has only just received recognition by the American Medical Association and the Association of Medical Colleges. The distinguishing feature of this medical school—the Chicago Medical School—has been in its admission policies. It is open to all, and, because of that, many Jewish students who have done well in their studies have been given their opportunity when it was almost impossible for them to find a place where they could enter anywhere else.

This school probably owes its accreditation to the devotion of its dean, Dr. John J. Sheinin. He came to this country from Minsk, Russia, in 1920. He went through many hardships when he first arrived in our country, but ultimately became a doctor. On being made professor and chairman of the Department of Anatomy of the Chicago Medical School, he brought to it his great talent and unending energy and determination. Sometimes it must have seemed an almost impossible task to bring this school up to where it could be considered first class academically, professionally and in its teaching facilities.

Dr. Sheinin has succeeded, and in so doing has vindicated what he calls "The American Plan," which is simply a plan of nondiscrimination. Only two considerations govern the admission rules of this college—character and scholarship merit.

One wishes that more schools and colleges and universities throughout the country would have the courage to set their standards high, but to eliminate two questions that all too often one finds on a request for admission: what is your race and what is your religion?

It seems to me that these questions have no bearing on one's right to an education in whatever field of learning one has chosen to follow. They should have no bearing, either, on one's success in whatever profession that is prepared for.

E. R.


Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

  • New York (N.Y., United States) [ index ]

About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, December 21, 1949

Roosevelt, Eleanor, 1884-1962
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Digital edition created by The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project The George Washington University 312 Academic Building 2100 Foxhall Road, NW Washington, DC 20007

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Digital edition published 2008, 2017 by
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MEP edition publlished on June 30, 2008.

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Transcription created from a photocopy of a UFS wire copy of a My Day column instance archived at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library.