I think the inclusion of grad students at Terrace Club (On the Campus, Jan. 19) is a great thing. As an undergrad alum of a big state school, on those nights when I felt the urge to head to the Street, I felt most at home at Terrace.
Probably only a small fraction of grad students will seek to join a club. If you know a couple of people, usually it’s easy enough to just show up and hang out for free. However, a handful of grad-student members would help bridge the social chasm that often divides the bulk of the grad and undergrad populations. Had joining Terrace been possible and affordable when I was at Princeton, I would have considered the option.
The way grad students are integrated into campus at Princeton is strange, to say the least. I made an effort to be involved on campus, and it was well worth it. But unquestionably, the undergrads own central campus, and few grad students think of Princeton as their home. Most just assume they aren’t welcome at most social events on campus.
The undergrad and grad-student populations have a lot to offer each other from a social standpoint. Most undergrads aren’t stuck up, and most grad students aren’t weird. I’m glad that things seem to be changing, with the resident graduate-student programs and Terrace opening its doors. Maybe it’s time for the Graduate College to start selling memberships to undergrads as well — a small flow of undergrads to the D-Bar isn’t such a bad idea, either.
Editor’s note: No graduate students chose to sign in to Terrace Club in February. Club officials said they were told that the cost of a dining membership was a major factor, and they are reviewing details of the plan.