Wasn’t it George Orwell, when writing 1984, who pointed out the irony of portraying events and situations with descriptions that turn reality on its head? In her president’s letter (June 2), President Tilghman says she hoped the Eating Club Task Force report will prompt “vigorous” conversations to “preserve the viability, vitality, and value of the eating clubs for many years to come.” Quite to the contrary, the clubs are well known to have been a dilemma to the administration for countless decades.
President Tilghman further tells us that the task force did not want to take issue with “the concept of selectivity.” That, however is exactly the primary focus of the recommendation that surfaced for a computer-managed non-bicker for assigning clubs their new members. This radical change could hardly “strengthen” or “benefit” the clubs, despite its being claimed.
Next, we are informed that under the new system, “painful separation of friends could be avoided.” Nevertheless, each of my three roommates and I happily joined different clubs, expanded our friendships, and still remained good friends. Finally, although Princeton strives to prepare undergrads for the real world ahead, there must be times when disappointment happens no matter how well-equipped they are. Not getting into your “first-choice club” might be part of the life-learning experience, instead of a “lasting emotional scar.”
This proposed gradual, sure destruction of the University’s selective eating clubs will greatly harm the Princeton experience while diminishing students’ preparation for the world, instead of protectively enhancing it.