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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

A guide to getting ahead in the (wrong) rankings

Published: November 18, 2011
Section: Opinions

When the 2011 college rankings were published, Penn State found itself among the top schools in the nation. Of course, it was not the U.S. News or Princeton Review college rankings in which Penn State was doing well. Instead, they were second in the nation on the Playboy Top Party Schools List and their football team reached a peak BCS ranking of 12th in the nation this year. The recent scandal at Penn State has exposed a campus culture where the football team took priority over all else, including the safety of children.

Thankfully, Brandeis has an almost polar opposite campus culture to the one found at Penn State. If Brandeis wanted to shoot up its “Playboy” and BCS rankings at the expense of our current number 31 ranking on the U.S. News list, however, this is a satirical look at how we could be more like Penn State and other big party schools where football comes first and learning is an afterthought.

The first thing Brandeis should do is restart our football program. We should also change the school motto to “Football Before All,” which would accurately reflect how important football will be to Brandeis, even at the expense of things like social justice and a commitment to diversity. The administration should then knock down the three chapels and build a football stadium on Chapels Field, which will serve as a cathedral for Brandeis’ new religion: football. Canning academic scholarships in favor of athletic scholarships will be an excellent way to help stock our football team with top talent. By also giving our football players early registration for classes and an automatic 2.7 GPA for excellent performance on the field, we will be able to attract the kind of players who won’t get distracted by academics. Finally, by raiding the scholarship fund of all available monies, the school can then pay a top football coach millions of dollars per year. There is no doubt the football coach should make more money than President Lawrence; after all, the coach will be a more important figure on campus. Lastly, The Rose Art Museum will need to be repurposed as a trophy case and shrine to our football team.

After reinstating our football team, the next step in Brandeis’ transformation will be to change the culture of the school so that it will be a nationally acknowledged party school. To do so, fraternities and sororities will need to be recognized immediately, with rules against hazing abolished and the number of fraternities tripled. The Mandel and Rabb academic complex will need to be knocked down so a “Frat Row” can be constructed in their place. By replacing academic buildings with fraternity houses, Brandeis will be making a statement about its new priorities. Brandeis will also have to institute certain rules regarding Greek life to ensure they take their rightful place on campus. To start, anyone who is not Greek will have to pay a “tax” to the university. As well, like at Penn State, only Greek-affiliated students will be able to attend fraternity parties. These rules, tied in with the fact that the administration will subtly encourage fraternities and sororities to blacklist anyone who fails pledging or leaves Greek life from clubs and activities, will strongly encourage every student to go Greek and stay Greek. This policy of blacklisting the rejects of the Greek system is done very effectively at some small universities with a large Greek community. Brandeis should be among these prestigious institutions. To truly give the fraternities and sororities the power they need, however, other rules will be established to reserve Student Union positions for Greeks only and allow Greeks to cut those unaffiliated losers in the dining hall lines.

With a campus dominated by Greek life and football, new campus traditions and committees will need to be instituted and quickly. One such tradition will be the “Louis Lap.” The “Louis Lap” will be a naked lap around the Loop Road that takes place at the end of Louis Louis week, in which all first-years will be pressured into taking part. To raise money for troubled youth, the fraternities will have an event called “Keg Stands for Kidz.” Hillel dinners will also be scrapped in favor of football rallies and Waltham Group will be disbanded so those funds can be used for the “Keisha for Kol Nidre” drive. Brandeis should not settle for a choir during Yom Kippur; instead, we should have Kesha singing on the holiest Jewish holiday. Other traditions will include “Sun’s Out, Guns Out,” a tradition practiced by jerks at colleges throughout America, challenging students to complete the “Ménage Louis,” which entails having sex on the Louis Brandeis statue. A hotness committee, staffed by the presidents of each fraternity and sorority with an honorary seat for the football captain, will have to be started as well, which will grade each student on their physical appearance during orientation.

By doing all of these things, Brandeis will be on its way up the Playboy Party School rankings. To achieve the top ranking, however, classes will have to be canceled on Fridays and Mondays so students can get the full experience of Thirsty Thursdays and Smashed Sundays. Finally, the last recommendation I have would be to put Four Loko vending machines across campus to help raise funds for the school (as well as to hydrate students).

Who knows, if Brandeis actually implemented all these wacky ideas we might be the number one party school in America according to “Playboy.” Tragically, many schools across the country actually have a few of these wacky ideas incorporated into the life of their campus.

Brandeis is a wonderful place to go to school precisely because we don’t have a football team that dominates the campus. We should take pride in the fact that instead of binge drinking, we’re known for our collective commitment to social justice. I am proud to go to a school that takes academics seriously, which is not to say Brandeis students don’t have a good time. We do, but somehow we manage to enjoy ourselves without the kind of debauchery that occurs at many of America’s other academic institutions.