The Spike: or, Victoria College Review, June 1910
"And that old wooden platform at the Chester County fair, Seemed the ridge pole of creation while I was spouting there."
Prior to 7.45 p.m. on Monday evening, many strange sounds might have been heard proceeding from the Choral Hall in Gloucester Street. Auckland, remembering athletic misfortunes, wailed, "We came last"; Canterbury, in a roundelay, detailed the fortunes of certain peanuts; Otago cried "Turuki," and Victoria "Ka mate." Good-humoured personalities were freely interspersed.
When order was duly restored, Prof. Blunt, the chairman, briefly opened the debate. The judges were Messrs. O. T. J. Alpers, G. T. Booth, and E. K. Mulgan. The subject of debate was: "That the training and education provided by such a university as ours is the best preparation for a commercial or industrial career." In the first debate, N. Gibson and H. H. Hauna (Canterbury College), affirmed, page 46 while M. H. Oram and J. M. Hogben (Victoria College) opposed the motion. In the second debate R. M. Algie and A. Marshall (Auckland University College) affirmed, and T. W. Haslett and J. L. Robinson (Otago University) opposed the motion.
The words "such a University as ours" seemed to lend themselves to various interpretations, a fact which to a certain extent spoiled the debate as a debate. Some speakers asserted that their opponents had quite missed the point of the motion, and as a result several consecutive speeches had little or no real reference to one another. Ambiguity in the motion for debate should certainly be avoided. The personal element was rather prominent in one or two speeches. As regards the speakers, Messrs. Marshall and Algie (Auckland University College) formed a good combination, providing both sound matter and much humour. The judges placed them first without difficulty, with Messrs Robinson and Haslett (Otago University) second. Hearty cheers for the winners, no longer "last," closed the proceedings.