Online Exclusive: Volpe's Speech

Notes from a speech written by founding dean, Paul Volpe, for a 1953 function'My dad, Dr. Volpe, was the founding dean of the Seattle University business school.'

This email, sent in response to a call for photos, was from Tessie Van Wagner, herself an alumna of Albers. 'In 1967, there were only a few women receiving degrees in Marketing. I was one of them.'

Van Wagner had donated photographs and memorabilia to Seattle University's Lemieux Library in 2010. With the help of the library's Mary Sepulveda, we found notes for a speech that Paul A. Volpe had delivered on May 20, 1953. The occasion was the school's Commerce Banquet that had, as special guest, T.S. Petersen, the president of Standard Oil Company of California. 

The notes, which were inserted in a scrapbook, are a special glimpse into the past. There is no better occasion than Albers' 75th year to read them and remember the extraordinary individuals, like Volpe, who came before us and who shaped the school as we know it today.

Fellow Students,

We are students not once but all our lives.

Our main course of study is to learn the goals of life.

There are principally three: how to live, how to work, how to die.

Our School of Commerce reflects these 3 goals in its structure of 3 levels.

Scrapbook of founding dean, Paul Volpe1st Comes the Cultural Base

Philosophy - the arts - History

Here we learn how to live.

Life is a grand adventure combining tears and joy.

Our magnificent political traditions of representative gov't, bill of rights & B. of Duties

Then follows the core of econ. & business studies leading to specialization in a chosen field of econ. endeavor

Here we learn how to work, how to produce, how to add to the prosperity of our nation.

Labor is not only necessary but noble for God wills it.

Witness the economic miracles of America -- what freedom, genius, toil & nature has wrought.

Material power in peace & war

The good life for so many

This is not all for progress can continue if we will it.

3rdly the Grandeur of the Spiritual

Here we learn how to live and how to die.

This life does not end, it continues into another infinitely superior but shaped by the present.

In all ages man must learn these goals

But especially in our times.

Now barbarism toils to destroy our country & our lives.

Now the enemy controls 800 m people. The size of our armed forces cannot save us.

Two things can save us

1. The Productive Power of our econ. orgs which business must promote

2. The moral and intellectual fibre of our citizens which the University must foster

These are the pillars of our strength.

These are the elements represented on this occasion.

We are happy to have with us so many representatives of business and the University.

This is the winning team in peace and war.

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