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:: by Ethan Frenchman, ‘08 and
:: Seth Mayer, ‘08

:: Illustration by Bill Jaynes

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Peer Review ::

From our pages

1908 The University ranked No. 1 in the nation in total number of PhDs conferred over the preceding ten-year period, with a total of 356. The May–June Magazine boasted, “Thirty-seven of the students of the Graduate School of the University have been accorded places among the thousand leading scientists.” Though fewer than half of Chicago’s graduate degrees were in the sciences, only Johns Hopkins outnumbered Chicago in science degrees awarded.

[From Our Pages]

1958 The College Class of ’61’s top declared major was physics, closely followed by medicine, the Magazine reported in a May profile on Chicago freshmen. Only 63 students in the 472-member class declared a major in the humanities division. Coming from 39 states, the class had a median combined SAT score of 1182, one of the highest in the nation, and 125 students held membership in the National Honor Society. The class broke down into 303 men and 169 women, and by spring quarter 28 percent of men and 28 percent of women had pledged a fraternity or women’s club.

1983 The Summer issue took an innovative approach to fund-raising for the Magazine, offering to name “an issue, a page, a paragraph, a word, or a comma” after contributors. Respondents gave generously, both in gifts and commentary. One business-school grad asked to underwrite “all the commas in the next issue,” while several alumni asked for exclamation points. One giver asked only that the University of Chicago Magazine rubber-stamp an honorary diploma for his toy poodle, Robert Tuffie. Editor Felicia Antonelli Holton, AB’50, signed Tuffie’s “dogtorate” and welcomed the pooch to “acadogemia.”

1998 Bert Cohler, AB’61, the William Rainey Harper professor in the Social Sciences Collegiate Division, sat down with the Magazine in June to discuss changes to the core curriculum. In response to alumni who noted that they’d “read with dismay about the revision of the undergraduate curriculum,” Cohler, who had taught Chicago’s general-education courses for more than 25 years, remained optimistic. “Students would sit around my apartment and argue with great passion whether Thucydides was a better historian than Herodotus,” said Cohler. “As long as our students are worrying about those issues, I don’t worry about changes in the College.”