Dartmouth in 2025

Joe Asch gazes into a crystal ball and, assuming that what’s present is prologue, imagines the news that might well come from Dartmouth in the year 2025. Here are some of the items:

* President Hanlon proudly announced that starting next year each and every undergraduate student would have a dedicated Assistant Provost. “We are proud that we lead the nation in student support,” he said. “Whatever issues face our students can be dealt with by direct professional help.” The College now has 6,482 non-faculty staffers on the payroll, up from 3,503 in 2015.

* Dartmouth was shut down for this term’s third Day of Study after yet another nanoaggression took place. A female student of color reported to the College’s 842-person Bias Incident Response Team (BIRT) that a male undergraduate had tilted his head and squinted at her in a way that made her feel that he was thinking racist thoughts. “This unacceptable behavior must end,” said President Hanlon. All students have been offered counseling should they feel aggrieved by the deeply troubling event.

* In a drop that had some wags calling it “25 in 25,” the College’s U.S. News ranking slipped two places to #25. “Rankings mean little,” The D quoted Phil Hanlon as saying. “I am confident that Dartmouth has the finest undergraduate program in northern New England, and it is only going to get better.” However many commentators expressed the belief that in 2019, the institution’s 250th birthday, when the number of graduate students exceeded the number of undergrads in Hanover, our reputation took a hit.

* Psi U fraternity was derecognized last week after an empty bottle of Smirnoff was found in its trash. Although the bottle had been used for many years as a candleholder, Vice Provost for Student Affairs Inge-Lise Ameer said that she felt that Dartmouth’s no-tolerance policy regarding hard alcohol was paying dividends. “We’ve been able to use it to get rid of the frats. You can’t beat that,” she was quoted as saying to her personal staff during their weekly meeting in Spaulding Auditorium. Psi U was the College’s last remaining Greek House, save for Alpha Phi Alpha.

* In a protest that Dean Ameer called “yet another wonderful, beautiful thing,” over two hundred BLM activists burned down Sanborn Library for the second time in as many years. Fortunately only nine students, all of the College’s current English majors, were injured in the fire. Among the BLM group’s 6,666 demands was the insistence that as of next year all members of the faculty be “of color” in order to redress “millennia” of racism in American life. The Trustees met in emergency session and agreed to add another $400 million to the diversity and inclusiveness budget.

Read them all. And weep.