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Thoma, Harry C. (ed.) / Wisconsin alumnus
Volume 38, Number V (Feb. 1937)

Badgers you should know,   p. 194

Page 194

       Penn    State Honors Hetzel                     has remained with
this first love ever since. Don't
                                                       get the idea that
because of these years of service he
  A  LUMNI of two universities paid tribute to one     is one of the oldest
members of the faculty-far from
alumnus of Wisconsin recently when Ralph D. Het-       it. Only 65, he has
decided that life has been pretty
zel, '06, started his second decade as president of    crowded for him  and
that it is just about time to
                                      orn in Me        1 r-  '  "knock
off" and relax at some golf and perhaps a
Pennsylvania State college. Dr. Hetzel, born in Mer-   little travel.
rill, Wis. in 1882, won his B.A. from Wisconsin in        Walter Smith has
seen the library grow from one
1906, his LL.B. in 1908, was admitted to the Wis-      of 18,000 volumes
to more than a half million; he
consin bar in the same year, and married Estelle Hem-  has seen the staff
expand from one man-that one
eman, also of Merrill, in 1911.                        being himself-tending
books for the 966 students
  To President Hetzel was paid one of the highest      in old Music Hall
to a staff of 60 serving the needs
tributes when students at Penn State indicated his     of 10,000 students
today. And the brightest page
leadership during "one of its per-                                 
      in his book of memories are those
ods of greatest growth, both in-                                        
 "greats" of Wisconsin tradition
tellectual and physical" by secret-                                
      with whom he worked and knew
ly laying plans to commemorate                                          
 intimately-such men as Presi-
his service to the college.                                             
 dent-enmheritus Birge, Julius 01-
  Proud boasts of Dr. Hetzel's                                          
 son, Frederick Jackson Turner,
administration:  45 per cent in-                                        
 C. S. Slichter and others.
crease in enrollment since his ad-                                      
    About forty    years ago   he
ministration started in 1926; dis-                                      
 helped plan the library building,
tribution of work by the college                                        
 which houses the University li-
in 231 extension centers in 67                                          
 brary and the Historical Society
counties of the state; organiza-                                        
 and the Historical Library, and
tion of a research graduate school,                                     
 has seen the establishment of sub-
one of the youngest in the coun-                                        
 libraries in the engineering col-
try, with   seven   departments                                         
 lege, the agricultural college, Bas-
already approved by the Ameri-                                          
 corn hall, and elsewhere on the
can Council of Education and                                            
 Campus. The main building was
training more than 1,000 regu-                                          
 a great achievement at the time it
larly enrolled graduates; appro-                                        
 was built but it is sadly over-
priation of $5,500,000 for new                                          
 crowded today as a result of the
campus buildings; and a liberal                                         
 record breaking enrollments of
and original plan of group insur-   President and Mrs. Hetzel with friends
 recent years.
ance covering all members of the   Students presented the chair and good
wishes  Hundreds of boys, most of
faculty, providing financial secur-                                     
 them from within the state, have
ity for professors and instructors and inducing new    worked for Smith in
the library as assistants, and
men to enter the college's teaching and research fields.  many of them have
kept in touch with him through-
  President Hetzel was president at the University     out the years. One
of them, Robert J. Usher, is at
of New Hampshire for nine years before he assumed      the Howard library
in New Orleans. Many of his
directorship of Penn State's administration, and re-   thirty-odd student
helpers are in pressing need and
ceived the honorary degree of LL.D. from Dartmouth     would be unable to
continue their schooling without
in 1918, from  the University of Maine in 1924,        his help. A vice-president
of the Electric company in
from  Bucknell University in 1927, and from    the     Milwaukee was a recent
visitor and reminded Smith
University of Pennsylvania in 1934.                    that he once worked
in the "stacks" as a student.
                                                       Without the help,
he said, he never would have been
    Walter Smith       Closes His Boolks              - able to complete
his college career. A Greek boy,
                                                       desperately poor while
on the Campus, was another
  W  HEN Walter M. Smith, '90, closed his great       helper. Now he is a
surgeon in Chicago.
desk in the University library at the close of the past   Smith has seen
the hand to mouth existence of stu-
semester, he left behind him row upon row of long      dents who would have
been far better off in employ-
green cases containing thousands of books over which   ment and the waste
of time well to do students who
he has been guardian for nearly a half a century. It   come only because
their parents send them. These
was almost forty-eight years ago that he assumed his   are the things he
talks about. They are things no
first position in the library while still a student. He  book can teach.

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