• Brown University modernizes admission process with new app

    PROVIDENCE, RHODE ISLAND – Over 46 thousand applications to the undergraduate Class of 2025 at Brown University were submitted last admissions cycle. Only 5.5% were admitted.

    With such impressive admission numbers on paper, Brown University’s decision to replace its student application with an app came as a surprise to many.

    In a Board of Trustees meeting conducted over Zoom last Friday, Provost Richard M. Locke justified the decision as inevitable.

    “20 years ago, higher education moved away from paper applications. Why? Online applications are easier to process and we can reach more prospective applicants. 20 years from now, higher education will be overtaken by admissions by app anyways. We are not just staying ahead of the curve here, we are leading higher education into the future.

    Richard M. Locke, Provost at Brown University

    Universities across the nation have seen the total number of applications steadily increase since the 1950s. Historically, the trend is fueled by an ever-greater share of high school graduates pursuing post-secondary education. Brown made headlines last year when it became the first Ivy League institution to make standardized tests optional for applicants in the 2022-2023 admission cycle.

    An applications app makes the tedious and exhaustive work of making admission decisions more efficient, says Undergraduate Admissions Officer Trevor Vance.

    “GPAs under 3.5, bad letters of rec, or profile pics of prospective students posing with a fish they caught – I automatically swipe left on all those.”

    Deanna Siat, Undergraduate Admissions Office at Brown University
    Screenshot of an application to Brown University as it appears to the Admissions Committee in the new app format

    Matches on the app between applicants and the admissions committee do not guarantee admission. Brown is also replacing its interview stage with a chat feature. Students that start chats with low-effort openings – such as gifs or simply “hey” – are frequently removed from the application pool.

    “Sometimes we waitlist applicants with no intention of ever admitting them. We love reading their desperate messages to get off the waitlist. Sometimes its nice just to recieve a little validation, y’know?”

    Trevor Vance, Undergraduate Admissions Office at Brown University

    Brown University’s new admissions app Browder is available for download on all Android and iOS devices.

  • Columbia Univesity to replace student bookstore with Columbia Sportswear

    Pictured: A focus group struggles to differentiate between logos (March 2022)

    NEW YORK CITY – Columbia University has announced plans to close its university bookstore in the summer of 2022.

    The university bookstore – located on the first floor of Lerner Hall on 2922 Broadway – was a hub of Columbia University apparel and merchandise for decades.

    The university’s Director of Communications, Miriam K. Beyer, said students and alumni will still be able to purchase apparel with Columbia’s name on it at any Columbia Sportswear store.

    “If you think about it, we’re not losing our student store. We’re saying now you can get Columbia University attire and merchandise at any outlet mall in America.”

    Miriam K. Beyer, Director of Communications at Columbia University
    Pictured: An admissions event on Columbia University’s campus. Or a Columbia Sportswear promotion table. Our fact-checkers weren’t really sure if there’s ever been a difference.

    Last Friday, the university’s legal department threatened legal action against any individual or business that uses Columbia Sportswear attire at promotional events not associated with Columbia University.

  • Yale recently labelled a “Private Ivy”

    Yale University Campus

    NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT – The latest reports by U.S. News are describing Yale University as a Private Ivy.

    The label is a reference to Public Ivy, a term that first showed up in Richard Moll’s Public Ivies: A Guide to America’s Best Public Undergraduate Colleges and Universities. The label describes reputable colleges and universities funded and operated by state governments, such as the University of Virginia or the University of Texas at Austin.

    Following the book’s 1985 publication, it is a term solely used by students and alumni of institutions on the list – particularly when Public Ivy students and alumni talk to acquaintances about where they went to college and the acquaintance is not immediately impressed.

    “This really puts Yale’s name up there with other top private schools, like Stanford and Duke,”

    Lauren Camera, Senior Education Writer for U.S. News

    Yale’s increasingly competitive admissions process and strong employment outcomes are a big factor in earning the university this new label. Experts suggest that, as a result, Yale might pull some applications away from Public Ivies.

    Social media is already buzzing about what other private colleges and universities are worthy of the label Private Ivy.

    Robert Morse, the Chief Data Strategist for U.S. News, confirmed earlier reports that his publication is compiling a list of institutions that might be worthy of the Private Ivy label.

    In an exchange of emails about other universities that are potentially in league with Yale as Private Ivies, Morse said Harvard and Princeton are “probably” going to be on the final list. When inquired about the University of Pennsylvania, Morse replied “Isn’t that a state school? That sounds like a state school.”

  • Cambridge University demands renaming of Cambridge, Massachusetts

    CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS – Andy Johnson was overjoyed to receive his acceptance letter to Cambridge University for a master’s degree in Social Communication. Classmates were impressed with the news and his family showered him with Cambridge University attire.

    “I packed all my belongings in my PT Cruiser and set Google Maps for directions to Cambridge, I could see the university campus all over the satellite view. When I showed up, something was off. It’s like I’m living in the Twilight Zone.”

    Andy Johnson had arrived in Cambridge, Massachusetts – 3,268 miles away from his intended destination: Cambridge, England.

    Dr. Mohamed A. El-Erian, President of the University of Cambridge, said this is the 14th occurrence this year of admitted Cambridge students accidentally moving to Cambridge, Massachusetts.

    Last Friday, the University of Cambridge’s Regent House voted unanimously on Resolution 4: demanding the renaming of Cambridge, Massachusetts.

    Sumbul Siddiqui, Mayor of Cambridge, Massachusetts, denounced any effort to rename the city. “This is New England. You’re going to have towns named after old England.”

    When asked to comment, Harvard University President Dr. Lawrence S. Bacow demanded that the city of Cambridge, England instead rename itself Harvard, England. “Tit for tat,” said Dr. Bacow, “your move, Old Cambridge.”

    Admitted Cambridge student Andy Johnson remains locked in his 12-month lease at a $3700/month 400 sq ft studio apartment in Cambridge, Massachusetts with his 3 other roommates.

  • Harvard Stadium to undergo $210 million dollar renovation

    Harvard Stadium

    BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS — The first stadium built for college football is scheduled also to become one of the most expensive stadium renovations of all time.

    The $210 million renovations will include seating capacity expansion, installation of VIP suites, and an external face-lift.

    “People come to Harvard for the sports. Do you really expect to get a ticket for the Harvard-Yale football game when our stadium’s seating capacity is a mere 30 thousand? The University of Alabama’s stadium can seat over 100 thousand.”

    Harvard University Athletics Director Erin McDermott

    Designated a National Historic Landmark in 1987, many are surprised the 119-year-old stadium is getting a face-lift. After all, the purpose of buildings and structures being recognized as National Historic Landmarks is to preserve cultural heritage deemed to be of national importance.

    Harvard Athletics Director Erin McDermott says the renovations will make the stadium look “even more historic.”

    Harvard hopes the stadium will become even more versatile. New functions of the stadium are to include re-enactments of famous battles, animal hunts, and public executions.

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