How Are We Expected To Be A Top Tier University If We Just Let Any Senior Go To Senior Formal?
A letter from Morton O. Schapiro
I've heard many complaints today about the unavailability of senior formal tickets. Many of you seem frustrated with the fact that what is advertised as an all-inclusive experience with the Senior Class is actually only available to the first few hundred people to respond. But to your concerns, I wish to raise another question: How can we reasonably expect Northwestern to breach the Top 10 in the U.S. News and World Report if we're just going to let any member of the senior class join in Senior Week festivities?
Makes sense, right? Northwestern is a terrific school, and every ounce of its greatness comes from the fact that students are competitive and ambitious. Students must fight tooth and nail for every student group membership, every role in a show, every exec position, and every grade. That's why Northwestern is one of the top 12 schools in the nation (according to U.S. News and World Report), and we're not going to maintain that status by just giving a senior formal ticket to any person who has paid $240,000 dollars and worked hard to graduate with a degree from this vaunted institution.
Here's the thing: giving things to people without making them work for it is a slippery, slippery slope. One minute we're letting every member of the Class of 2014 share a nice evening with their friends and acquaintances; the next minute we'll be accepting more than 15% of applicants. Before too long, we won't even be ranked ahead of Vanderbilt. Fucking Vanderbilt, people. I'm not going to let this university fall behind those godless, seal-clubbing monsters.
If you want to get everything you want without having to work for it, maybe you should just build a time machine and go back to the goddamn New Deal.
Northwestern is a wonderful school, and all of you have worked hard to get here, but none of you came here without the expectation of continuing to work hard. That's true in academics, it's true in extracurriculars, it's true in professional endeavors, and I'll be fucksawed if it's not true in overpriced sentimental experiences with your graduating class.
If I still haven't convinced you that it's best for this university for only the best, most Norris-Box-Office-ready seniors to go to formal, then maybe Northwestern isn't right for you after all. Here's a link to a transfer application for the University of Illinois. I hear that they let all their seniors have a great time together before loosing them upon a world that doesn't give two tiny titties about your degree from a school ranked #41 in the U.S. News and World Report.
Morton O. Schapiro