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In other States the experiment was tried at about the same period and with no better success; and even under State patronage, and with the ample means provided at Cornell University, the number of students that resort to manual labor as a partial means of support is less in recent years than at first. In some instances individual benefit has been derived from the opportunity afforded for earning by labor in hours not given to study; but with the greater number of self-dependent young men, it has been found more desirable to devote the whole of their time for a season to the earning of the means to enable them to give undivided attention to their studies afterward.
(3.) Educational Institutions formed under the General Act for the Incorporation of Benevolent, Charitable, Scientific and Missionary Societies.
Several instances have occurred under which educational institutions were organized under the provisions of chapter 319 of the Laws of 1848, for the formation of Benevolent, Charitable, Scientific and Missionary Societies. As provision had long before been made for the incorporation of Colleges and Academies by the Regents, and at a later period all institutions of this kind were entitled to claim a charter as a right, upon compliance with general rules established by the Regents, it was thought that abuses might arise from allowing the practice to continue, and to prevent this, an act was passed June 29, 1882,1 entitled "An act to restrict the formation of corporations under chapter 319 of the Laws of 1848, entitled An act to provide for the incorporation of Benevolent, Charitable, Scientific and Missionary Societies,' and the acts amendatory thereof, and to legalize the incorporation of certain societies organized thereunder, and to regulate the same," which forbade the continuance of practice in the future, so far as related to Literary or Scientific Colleges and Universities, without the approval of the Regents.
This approval might be indorsed upon, and filed with, the certifi cate, and the Regents were empowered as a condition of their ap proval, to impose such conditions as in their judgment they might deem advisable, not in conflict with said acts.
All Scientific and Literary Colleges and Universities organized under this act, which had reported to the Regents within two years prior to the date of this act, were declared legally incorporated, and all degrees conferred by them were confirmed.
Chap. 367, Laws of 1882.
In a suit brought for the purpose of invalidating the charter of the United States Medical College," that had been formed under this act, it was decided against the College, and the decision, when carried to the Court of Appeals, was in June, 1884, confirmed.
ALUMNI ASSOCIATIONS IN COLLEGES AND ACADEMIES ALUMNI
In most Colleges, and in many Academies, Alumni Associations have been organized, and in some instances for many years. They were at first merely voluntary associations of persons united by a common interest, and wholly without corporate rights; but in several instances special acts of incorporation were obtained, either by express provision, or upon the number of Alumni reaching a fixed
By a general act passed June 3, 1882, entitled "An act to provide for the incorporation of the Alumni of Colleges and Universities in the State of New York," associations of this kind were allowed to be formed, upon proceedings analogous to those required for societies and corporations under other general acts. Not less than nine persons qualified for membership, might execute and acknowledge a certificate stating the name and object of the corporation, and the names of first Directors. This, when recorded in the office of the County Clerk of the county where the College or University was located, would invest the association with corporate powers, among which were the right of accumulating a fund, with an annual income of not more than $10,000, the election of one or more of its members as Trustees of the College, as its charter might allow, the publication of a Record or Directory, and the adoption of rules and regulations in a constitution and by-laws, as might be deemed consistent with the objects of their incorporation, and not inconsistent with the laws of the State. Only one corporation could be formed under this act for one College or University. The word "Alumni" was defined as applicable to both male and female graduates. Should the Alumni of two or more Colleges unite in
'In Cornell University this limit was fixed at 100, by section 1, chapter 763, Laws of 1867, amending the original act of incorporation, passed April 27, 1865. Chap. 268, Laws of 1882.
forming a corporation, under the provisions of this act, then but one such corporation could be formed of the Alumni so uniting.
This act was amended April 30, 1884,' by further defining the powers of the associations in voting for Trustees of their Colleges, in adopting rules of membership, in providing for certain expenses, and in verifying their annual reports.
The policy of intrusting a share of the management of Colleges and Universities to their Alumni, as persons presumed to be best acquainted with their condition and most interested in their welfare, has been recognized for many years, and provision has been made for elections for this purpose, from among the Alumni, by special acts, or under amendments of the charters by the Regents, from time to time.
The general acts of 1882 and 1884, above noticed, did not affect any of the special acts previously passed, and applied only to corporations that might be formed under them.
THE RULES THAT HAVE GOVERNED IN THE DISTRIBUTION OF THE INCOME OF THE LITERATUre Funds.
The first direct appropriation of moneys by the Legislature for distribution among the Academies of the State, under the direction of the Regents, was in 1792. In an act passed April 11th of that year, entitled "An act to encourage Literature by donations to Columbia College, and to the several Academies in the State," after granting £7,900 ($19,750) to the College for several objects specified, it appropriates the sum of £1,500 ($3,750), annually, for the term of five years, to the Regents of the University to be by them distributed " among such and so many of the several Academies as now are or hereafter may be erected in this State, during the said terms, in such proportions, and to be appropriated in such manner as they shall judge most beneficial for the several Academies, and most advantageous to Literature."""
In reporting upon their action in this matter to the Legislature at its next session, the committee of the Regents state:
1 Chap. 216, Laws of 1884.
2 Chap. 69; 15th Session. Folio edition of Laws, p. 71.
3 Senate Journal, 16th Sess., p. 91.
"That the Trustees of some of the incorporated Academies have solicited pecuniary aid for the purpose of erecting buildings for the accommodation of teachers and scholars, or for furnishing such as have been erected, but not completed, stating their inability to accomplish either from the paucity of their funds.
"The committee conceive that if appropriations were made for such purposes, much embarrassment would result from persons, who, though they had not secured funds adequate to the support of such institutions, would nevertheless be induced to solicit incorporation, in the hope of assistance from the Regents, and support their request by a plea of precedent. The committee are, therefore, of opinion, that every such application ought to be discountenanced, and pecuniary aid extended only for the following purposes, to-wit: For the support of an additional teacher or teachers, where requisite, and where the Trustees have not the means to provide an adequate salary, or to augment the compensation of the teachers in such Seminaries. To purchase such philosophical apparatus and books as are indispensably necessary to conduct a course of academical education. To enable Trustees to take into the Academies committed to their superintendence, such youth of genius whose parents are too indigent to pay the expense of tuition.
"That the inspecting committees should be directed to apply the money, which may be appropriated by the Regents, to one or all of the objects herein above stated; or, if the money is to be paid into the hands of the Trustees of the several Academies, that they should stipulate the particular purposes to which it is to be applied; and if applied to the purchase of a philosophical apparatus and books, that the apparatus and books be specified, and that the property thereof be continued in the Regents and the Trustees of the Academies respectively, to take measures that it be not converted to other than the purposes intended by the Regents."
The policy foreshadowed in this report has in the main been ever since maintained. It aims to assist those who are willing to help themselves, and by stimulating to effort by sometimes stipulating, as in later years, that grants for libraries and apparatus should be conditioned to the raising of an equal amount for the same object from other sources, it doubles the benefit secured, where without this motive, nothing might have been done or attempted. There have been many instances of direct appropriations by the Legislature, for building purposes and the like to particular institutions, but none where the funds were distributed under an apportionment made by the Regents.
The appropriation of 1792 was divided as follows:
To Erasmus Hall, £150; to Union Academy, £86; to Union Hall, £124; to North Salem Academy, £176; to Dutchess County
Academy, £206; to Farmers' Hall, £176; to Montgomery Academy, £176; to Washington Academy, £156; to the Academy of the town of Schenectady, £124; to Hamilton-Oneida Academy, £126.
The committee in making this first distribution state, that they had been governed by existing circumstances, and that this was not to be considered as a precedent for future distributions.
The apportionment of 1794 was as follows:
To Schenectady and Washington Academies, each £160; to Clinton, Erasmus Hall and Johnstown Academies, each £130; to Dutchess, Farmers' Hall, Hamilton-Oneida, Montgomery, North Salem and Union Hall Academies, each £110. Total, £1,500 ($3,750).
When this aid to Academies began, there was no Common School system in the State, and they were obliged to give the elementary instruction which the Public Schools should supply. The grade of many of the early Academies was very low, and was scarcely equal to the average Common Schools of the present day.
But the Academies needed aid, and it was quite proper to assist them in proportion to the work done. There accordingly arose a plan of appropriating moneys upon the basis of attendance, as re ported by the Trustees of Academies, without reference to the studies pursued, or the attainments of scholars. The report prepared in April, 1817, contains the first distinction made between common and classical students, the information being compiled from the returns, made upon printed blanks in use since 1804. It showed a total attendance of 2,887 students in the twenty-five Academies reporting, of whom 1,104 were in classical or higher English studies.
On the 7th of April, 1817, Mr. Jenkins, from the committee that had made the apportionment for that year, submitted the following resolution, which was adopted:
Resolved, That all future distributions of the funds of the Regents shall be made among the several incorporated Academies in this State, in proportion to the number of students who during the preceding year, have received that course of instruction in the classics, and the higher branches of learning in the said Academies respectively, which are usually deemed necessary as preparatory to the admission of students to well-regulated Colleges, and upon this condition that the reports of the Trustees shall contain a satisfactory assurance that the said Academies are respectively endowed with funds producing the annual revenue required by the Regents, at the time of their respective incorporations.