Princeton is taking a cue from fraternity practice and indentured servitude in urging freshmen to become “thesis buddies” for seniors – essentially, asking them to perform work for them. Princeton Seniors face a considerable thesis requirement, and Whitman, the new residential college, has come up with a convenient solution to their potential labor troubles: impress the freshmen into service. This isn’t theoretical, they’re talking about labor, specifically – Ivygate printed the email announcing the program. Here are some choice bits:
Each participating Whitman senior will be assigned 2 underclassmen who will be “on call” during the final thesis push. If you are working away in your room and feel like you need a midnight snack all you have to do is contact your thesis buddy and he/she will bring you a hot dog and a red bull or whatever else you need to burn the midnight oil.
Obviously, the idea isn’t to take advantage of your buddy, but to have him or her help out in a pinch. Other examples of acceptable duties include: taking care of a load of laundry, picking up/dropping off some library books, or proofreading a chapter for typos. Unacceptable duties would include: attending a class in your stead, cleaning your room, doing your homework, or getting your thesis bound.
How do you sign up?
How do you sign up, indeed! Princeton – bringing Tom Brown and Roald Dahl’s schooldays to an American College near you – for $44,200 a year.