From my perspective, Meaghan Byrne ’10’s characterization of the older alumni who wrote letters about systemic racism as “absolute fossils” showed a lack of understanding, humility, respect, and appreciation for the “Old Tigers” and Princeton alumni who precede her and on whose shoulders younger generations stand. Of course, she is free to express her opinion. However, the use of name calling and generalizing that “such older alumni” are racists closes any civil discussion or debate.

Through the generous financial support from alumni donors given to those accepted but unable to afford it, they are able to attend, study, receive an exceptional education, and earn a prestigious degree. A Princeton degree opens many doors to do, accomplish, and contribute so much to others, our communities, and our nation.  

The generosity of Princeton’s older alumni gave my son the opportunity to enroll, attend, and graduate, because as public school educators, my husband and I could not have afforded it. The instruction, encouragement, and guidance of several alumni who supported him to carry on and persevere were also key to his success and completion of his degree.

Whether or not Ms. Byrne received financial support from Princeton alumni or her parents to attend and graduate, like my son, she received a degree and all its benefits from the most prestigious university in the country. 

On behalf of our family, we’re eternally grateful for the generosity of “Old Tigers.”

Vicki Ross p’07
Anchorage, Alaska