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Life on Campus - Students, Faculty, and Staff

Though the Great War had a staggering impact on the University of Saskatchewan, life went on. With the exception of the College of Engineering, the campus remained open. Students were taught, research conducted and degrees granted. The student paper (The Sheaf) still published and the Board of Governors still met and set administrative policy. But it was not business as usual. The university was a "public eating place" and therefore subject to Canadian government regulations designed to curb the consumption of food. The look and the feel of campus changed with the advent of war. It was common to see men in uniforms and by early 1915 the University Senate imposed compulsory physical drill, including military drill, for all students. With men leaving for the front, women took on roles that had been closed to them in the past. For instance, when Professor Bateman vacated his post as English Professor partway through the school year, Miss Jean Bayer (President Murray's secretary and Bateman's fiance) filled the vacancy as instructor of English. Research was more directed than before with the belief that innovation would be the key to victory. In late 1916 Murray joined the newly created Honorary Advisory Council for Scientific and Industrial Research of Canada. A variety of war-related problems were investigated and some members of staff were given exemption from conscription.

The material presented here seeks to give a glimpse of life on campus during the Great War. Items below include excepts from the Minutes of the Board of Governors, The Sheaf and the President's Reports. Some correspondence to and from President Murray MG2001.1 is also included.