I found my self-respect

Date: September, 1937.
Place: the Board Room, old Admin. Building.
Occasion: a verbal means test, to determine if I qualified for the bursary that I need to fund my first year at UBC.

The inquisition was brutal. I had to prove that I was a poor student as well as a good one. I left the chamber feeling like one of the lesser wretches of Oliver Twist.

Then I went in – the door was open – to see this man who beamed at me over his pipe. He spoke to me as though I was, by some miraculous transformation, a human being.

He welcomed me to his home of learning. And right there in his office I found what so many others, thousands, found in the presence of Walter Gage. I found my self-respect.

Eric Nichol