Monday, May 10, 2010

More on Exam Time--Party Schools

After I wrote my previous post about student anxiety in the job market, I ran across ATL's characteristically arch account of the party school sweepstakes. It's all good fun, but I wonder if they gave sufficient to one important determinant in the party-school milieu: student stress.

I don't know exactly how this fits in and I'm sure it is complicated but I suspect it is an issue worth considering. That is: why do students get shitfaced drunk? Possible reasons: (a) they like getting shitfaced drunk; (b) they don't know any better; (c) they value partying more than work; (d) it's an escape from disabling anxiety. I suspect that the correct answer is (e) all of the above in vary degrees, and differing at different schools. I mean, look at the list: Arizonas at numbers one and four--sure, sun and sand. Tulane at number two--New Orleans, a no brainer. Florida State--well okay, Florida, but FSU is in the non-tourist wing (from Miami, they say, you go north to go south).

And then 5-6-7: Berkeley, Virginia, Michigan. I suppose you can make up all sorts of reasons, but this looks to me like overachiever central--places like the first of La Traviata, where everybody is whooping it up but nobody seems to be having much fun.

Afterthought: No joke, the kiddies from Tulane really stole Mr. Rogers' shoe?

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