Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Life of an Alumna

So, dear readers, I am still working on acquiring the season finale of Rome. Probably tomorrow, and you may even get a double feature with 300 as well. We shall see.

In the meantime, I'd like to discuss Alumni Associations. I haven't even been out (of undergrad) for a full year. They call and ask me to update my info. Do I have a job? No, I'm a grad student. Ten minutes later in the conversation, she drops the bomb--well, how would you like to help out our university by a small donation of just, well, only, the small, tiny amount of . . . $300.

If I could have glared over the phone, I would have. Instead, I said very politely, "Well, as I just pointed out, I'm a grad student and have no job." "Well, if you can't afford that, perhaps a smaller donation of only just . . . $100." "Again, grad student, deep in debt." I had to tell her about my expensive grad school fees before I could beg out of the conversation.

There was also the amusing part where she was telling me about how the university would like their ranking to be higher on the academic level, like their athletic rankings are. I'm afraid I couldn't hold back a biting comment about the way they shuffled out students when it came to game days on campus. I can't tell you how many Greek classes were interrupted or cut short for parking issues on game days. My wrath is deep and bitter and pure. I am, dear readers, wonderly wroth.

But she was a poor, naive freshman who didn't yet know the evil ways of the university. And at the very least, I did get to educate one more person about what a "Classics major" means. Any conversation where that lesson is learned is a good one.


Blogger Choppa said...

Ah, you were at Walden ;-)

Tell the leeches that your parents asked you to pass any education gifts you feel like making forward to your own kids.

Or that 3oo bucks could educate a truckful of girls in a poor country for a term at least. Or pay for a full-time English lecturer at university in Kazan' in Tatarstan (Russian Federation) for four months.

My whole university education was paid for by the state and local authority (Britain). Standards were higher back then, and academic freedom was a reality.

On the other hand, I suppose I miss out on the Homecoming orgies :-(

3:03 PM  
Blogger Dave Csonka said...

I would see if there was a way to donate money directly to your academic college or school, instead of the University as a whole. It's insane, even at huge Universities; you'll hear about the millions getting pored into athletic programs, and then simultaneously watch as your particular college has to get by on 5 year old computers and moldy classrooms.

9:33 AM  
Blogger Brontëana said...

For us it is Engineering... The Engineering faculty is the worst in the university: highest percentage of drop outs, etc, but the university gifted them with millions and a new building. The whole FASS is left in the lurch. We despair...

See, at least in Halifax, when people ask me for money and I tell them I'm a student, they laugh and then leave me alone. ;)

1:05 PM  
Blogger Glaukôpis said...

I actually discussed this with a prof of mine later, and it might be possible to donate to a specific department. I might look into that when/if I actually have any money. ;-)

And the girl who called was telling me about brand spanking new buildings for the sciences or somesuch, and I had to try REALLY hard not to whip out a snarky comment about the University maybe doing something for Classics some day. :-P

Although, apparently, the history dept finally got off their asses and hired a medievalist. I thought that was never going to happen, and I griped about it a few times!

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