Give Back

A stupid email i just received from the presidents of some equally pointless senior class campaign who are still under the sad illusion that i am graduating (or that i would give back to the school).

Seniors!
We need your help to rally the class and show our gratitude for the opportunities, experiences,
and friendships that Cornell has provided us.
We ask that every senior participate in the Campaign by giving back,
whether by making a gift, or by volunteering your time or talent.

Did you know that full tuition covers only 60% of the cost of your education?
Cornell absolutely depends on student and alumni generosity,
so help us ensure that the next generation has the same opportunities we did.
Give to the Annual Fund or the part of Cornell that means the most to you.
Whether it’s $5, $25, $50, or more, it all adds up.

Don’t you mean only 60% of full tuition covers the cost of my education? The other 40% is spent on manicuring the lawns, refurbishing pottery studios, planting tulips in front of Day Hall so parents will think cornell is always that pretty when they come for commencement, paying for the upkeep of the million places in Cornell that I don’t use like the plantations and the greenhouses and the science labs and the engineering library and the observatory and the stables, paying for someone else’s financial aid… Don’t be stupid. And don’t cite such meaningless statistics to people who can see through your blatant spin doctoring. I have no money (that I would give back to you anyway). Math is the most fuss-free discipline that doesn’t need any expensive equipment apart from computational power and blackboards. That’s the beauty of it. It’s cheap but only because its strips everything down to the barest fundamentals. Would you care to explain why my tuition fees still total $40 000 a year? That would probably buy me 400 blackboards.

On a side note, did you know that cornell has it’s own smith and kiln? As in, the guy who fashions tools for specialized experiments and an oven to bake glassware in. Let’s say your typical beakers and conical flasks and crucibles are not enough, there is someone (your tuition pays for) at cornell that will design new laboratory equipment that suits your experiment. One of the millions of Things You Never Knew You Paid For.

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