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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    The UA’s downfall?

    Last week, Playboy Magazine announced the top 25 party universities in the country, and the UA was dubbed the fifth best party school. Instead of experiencing a rush of embarrassment, some students consider it an “”honor”” to attend a wild university, even though these same students don’t realize that Playboy isn’t doing the UA any favors. By adding us to this atrocious ranking, Playboy is telling the country that the UA is made up of spoiled, promiscuous, irresponsible, moronic students who are only good for the insanity they bring to university life.

    You may be wondering how the UA managed to lap ASU on Playboy’s party school report. According to a recent Daily Wildcat article, each school is selected with the following considerations in mind, “”Playboy ranked the schools on five criteria: campus life, sports, sex, brains and “”bikini,”” which combined weather, guy-to-girl ratio and cheerleaders.””

    Essentially, Playboy is telling readers that the UA is made up of promiscuous women and STD-infected men who are so unfixable that they’ve won national recognition for their disgusting, degrading behavior. What a wonderful determining factor for a prospective college student to consider when looking at the UA.

    As to be expected, the Playboy article does nothing to recognize the academic challenges that UA students welcome when they pick a college to go to. Leo, a senior quoted in the article, describes the biggest decision of his life thusly: “”When I was applying to schools, it was between the University of Arizona and the University of Colorado at Boulder. Would I rather walk around in board shorts and sandals, looking at gorgeous girls in bikinis for eight months out of the year or shovel snow and freeze my nuts off in Boulder? I made the right decision.””

    As amazing as the UA is, the University of Colorado at Boulder has higher ranked academics and more selective admission, so this student denied the statistically better school because the cooler weather would make all the girls keep their clothes on. The magazine chose to interview a shallow student who states that his biggest college deal breaker was having the option of attending classes with half-naked girls.

    Leo used tactless, crude language in what could have been a semi-serious one-on-one interview. Judging from the fact that Leo could have gone to either of two large public institutions in different states, he definitely has the means to attend either school, and if he’s mostly concerned with parties, he makes the UA population seem like a bunch of wealthy party animals who make all their decisions based on how much fun they can have since money is never an issue. Forget academics, good grades, or financial responsibility.

    Why couldn’t Playboy report on more reasons why some students decide on the UA, which often pampers honors students with scholarships and Honors College memberships because these people are usually excellent investments? Will some of these honors students who don’t go out drinking reconsider going to the UA? Why would they want all their hard work to be jeopardized by the vapid majority that earned us this disappointing reputation?

    Why will more people soon know that the UA is a top party school than the fact that U.S. News & World Report placed UA in a tie for 45th among public national universities in America’s Best Colleges 2009?

    Why would Playboy downplay the university’s greatest achievements, particularly the accomplishment of having the number one nationally ranked political philosophy program? The UA has a smattering of highlights to be proud of, and Playboy has set fire to all of them because most people will only remember this university as a top five party school.

    As many Wildcat commentators have pointed out, this humiliating ranking may actually discourage prospective students from coming to the UA. Some of their parents won’t want to pay for an education that can be destroyed by too much partying. It’s going to be hard for recent graduates to get jobs, and this ranking can tell an employer that the UA alumnus had too much fun in college and went to a poor university. We don’t need to be worrying about ways in which our degree can actually hurt us when we leave the commencement ceremony, so some students will just choose not to invest in a school that is better known for its Jungle Parties than for its classroom activity.

    One can argue that this new ranking may bring in more money to the university. Playboy’s endorsement can attract potential Greek Life students who really like wild parties, who in turn invest several thousands more in the UA every year.

    But are these the only kinds of students we want at the UA?

    Diversity, in every sense of the word, is what makes this university great, and we’d lose campus diversity if we only began catering to the wild party students. It’s a possible outcome now that Playboy has discreetly announced that they think UA is an academic joke.

    -ÿLaura Donovan is a creative writing junior. She can be reached at letters@wildcat.arizona.edu.

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