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

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NEW YORK—For the presentation of the honorary degrees at Roosevelt University in Chicago last Wednesday evening, we left our dining tables and went over to the opposite side of the hall. The university chorus rendered some beautiful numbers and, following its performance, I was very proud to receive a degree with Chief Justice Earl Warren and Dr. Jonas Salk. It was a disappointment to me that because of the pressure of his work elsewhere Dr. Salk could not be present.

The Chief Justice and I both felt, I believe, that the work accomplished by the university in the past 10 years and the kind of education it dispenses to its students made our degrees doubly valuable.

Getting out of Chicago at night is not so easy and because of delays I didn't succeed in getting on a plane for New York until 5:45 a.m. Thursday, which made my day in New York on Thursday a little hurried. I did manage, however, to visit the telephone exchange of the United Jewish Appeal on my arrival and early in the afternoon I had lunch with 31 women who had traveled up from Arkansas to visit the United Nations.

It is remarkable what one woman's enthusiasm can do! One woman apparently was the leader of this group of women who came up from Arkansas. They were members of the Federation of Women's Clubs and they seemed to have profited greatly by their morning visit to the U.N. building and a briefing which they had been given there. I think everyone of them will go back ready to join the American Association for the U.N. and much more willing to work to get information about the association to the people of the areas in which they live.

What a terrible catastrophe nature brought about in some of our Southwestern states! The little town of Udall, Kansas, in the news photographs looked to me as though a bomb had struck it. There were only two buildings left standing. For many, many people tragedies occurred not only in the loss of life but in the loss of things that they had cherished.

Of course, one thing is certain and that is that one cares less about things when one is confronted with the possibility of losing people. And in this case those who survived must have felt great thankfulness no matter what they lost in cherished belongings. One realizes, however, that some people may have to begin their lives all over again from the standpoint of financial loss.

The Institute of International Education recently published a pamphlet on "The Goals of Student Exchange." In this they emphasized particularly education, and they said frankly that "future support for interchange of scholars will depend on honest evaluation of the results of such programs. The exchange movement will ultimately be endangered by setting for it unrealistic or impossible goals."

This is perfectly true, for one cannot expect more from a period of education than a limited amount, but that amount is of great value. And I personally think that the student exchange as well as the exchange of people on other levels helps enormously in international understanding.


(Copyright, 1955, by United Feature Syndicate, Inc.)

Names and Terms Mentioned or Referenced

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About this document

My Day by Eleanor Roosevelt, May 31, 1955

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
The Eleanor Roosevelt Papers Project

Available under licence from the Estate of Anna Eleanor Roosevelt.

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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.