Having entered the preparatory schools with 94 cents, and college with less, and knowing that the greater number of those who control the affairs of the nation and who strive to make the country better, are men and women who did likewise, the thought for this book entered my mind. The first aim was to collect matter from students only, but this was changed. The main part of the book contains articles from college and university graduates. The last part of the book contains contributions from students now in college, and shows how the actual thing of working one's way through college or university is being done. A few of the articles which go to make this volume were used as a special series in the Raleigh Times, Raleigh, North Carolina, and requests from various parts of the country were received by the compiler for the production of the series.
The object of the compiler is not to praise the merits of those who have succeeded, but to point a moral to young men and women who desire an education and have small means. A prominent editor says: "The history of college education among English speaking people is now about one thousand viii years old. It began with the University of Oxford in England, which has been in existence a decade of centuries. It has spread to many lands, but in all lands it has been about the same to the poor boy. It can be truly said that he has never seen an age or a country or a college where he had an easy time in getting his diploma. It has always been a fearful struggle for him, and it will doubtless continue to be. But it is also true that the brightest pages, the very brightest, in all our long educational history are those that record the triumphs of the poor boy. And his triumphs are written throughout that great period. He has demonstrated a thousand times over that 'where there is a will there is a way,' that 'poverty does not chain one to the soil.