Yale Gets Dorked: 43,000 SSNs Available via Simple Google Search

Dear Yale students,

Remember that time when you first matriculated? And Yale was all like, “Hey guys, no big deal, but we’re going to need all of your personal information. Yeah, that Social Security number? Fork it over. Don’t worry, though. We’re world-class academics. We know not to do anything stupid with it, like make it available on Google, or whatever.”

Yeah, well, turns out Yale was wrong.

The university announced on Friday that around 43,000 Social Security numbers — belonging to current and former students, faculty, staff and alumni — were released into the Google ether at some juncture in the past, apparently by force of sheer incompetence innocent mistake. The issue was first noticed this June, and servers with at-risk files were immediately disconnected from the interwebz.

The leak was supposedly plugged with minimal damage, though no one is really sure whether or not the data was accessed. Yale, in the mean time, is offering complimentary credit monitoring and identity theft insurance to all those affected. Which is surely a huuuuuge relief to everyone involved.  Read the rest of this entry »

Columbia College Dean Moody-Adams Resigns In Protest Over Administration

In an strongly-worded email to alumni this morning, Columbia College Dean Michelle Moody-Adams announced her resignation, citing moves by Columbia’s administration that would “have the effect of diminishing and in some important instances eliminating the authority of the Dean of the College over crucial policy, fund-raising and budgetary matters.” The details of the story remain unclear, but we do have a serious idea about what’s going on and why this affects Columbia students (and college students in general).

It might sound strange, but Columbia University and Columbia College aren’t really good friends. In its quest to become the coolest, richest, and most badass land-holding company, er… university ever, Columbia has often neglected the funding needs of the College, which despite being Columbia’s oldest school, is not really a cash cow (partly due to that darn financial aid for poor kids!). So in recent years, the University-College relationship has gone from ‘married’ to ‘it’s complicated’. Read the rest of this entry »

Cornell Student: Internet Bandwidth Is My Anti-Drug

MetaEzra reports that a Cristina Lara, a rising sophomore, is pushing against the University’s policy of capping internet bandwidth to 50 GB per month and charging heavy users for overconsumption of bandwidth.  She’s started a petition here and argues that “With a pricetag $57,000 per year, Cornell University should give it’s students unlimited internet usage.” All right, fair enough. But wait! There’s more. Lara’s petition goes one step further and makes a statement on Cornell’s social scene:

Cornell students in particular face a great deal of stress, and one of our outlets is to “surf the web”, read the news, watch movies, and make online purchases. By charging us for our internet usage, the Cornell University administration hinders our ability–and our willingness–to use the internet for recreational purposes.

If Cornell was situated in a major metropolitan area with a vast nightlife that could accomodate the interests of most, if not all, our undergraduates, then many Cornellians wouldn’t be so inclined to stay in their rooms and get on the internet. But that’s not the case. Cornell’s greek life dominates the social scene, making “nightlife” a dividing factor in the community.

Cornell students rely on the internet for recreational purposes, and are unwilling to pay the price for that any longer. While some students opt to partake in drug-related pastimes, other students stay in and watch movies, talk on Skype or iChat, or even just surf the web. We should not be penalized for this, and implore the Cornell University administration to completely eliminate it’s policy of charging students for the internet.

Read the rest of this entry »

Ranking the Ivy League Schools: S&P Edition

Our readers had a lot to say about our post last Tuesday about college rankings. Some accused the author (yours truly) of gloating too hard about Penn’s epic failure. Other commenters took to bashing Forbes Magazine (which ranked Columbia, Cornell, and Penn as #42, #51, and #52 in the country, respectively), with one accusing the Forbes of being ” the S&P of college rankings” and “trying to get some attention by giving low rankings to schools virtually everyone agrees are among the best in the world.”

That gave us an idea. Given the recent hullabaloo about Amurrica’s credit rating being downgraded from “fuck yeah” to “we’re all going to die”, we thought – why not look at the real S&P of college rankings: the S&P itself? What might Standard & Poor’s say about the financial stability of our dear Ivy League institutions? And might Penn be redeemed after its humiliating snubbing by the Princeton Review? Here are the results. Read the rest of this entry »

Hispanic Worker Alleges Princeton Club Prefers White People

File this piece under “Predictable as Hell”: the NY Daily reports that the Princeton Club of New York has been accused by a fired Hispanic worker of, well, firing her for a white guy. Fifty-one year old payroll manager Jo-Ann Garcia of New York alleges that she was forced out after 29 years of employment, during which she claims she “was never reprimanded for anything and did wonderful work”, because the general manager desired “white, native English speaking personnel and found the Hispanic accent… to be embarrassing.”

We’re a little disappointed that it took Ms. Garcia 29 years to realize that the Princeton Club prefers pale white men. But we’re more disappointed with Princeton. I mean, come on. Country club racism is so passé (didn’t they hear that sexual harassment is the new big thing in this city?). And while it might make sense for a Club with such distinguished guests to be a little image conscious, Ms. Garcia was a payroll manager in the back room. That means if the Princeton Club was an Abercrombie, Ms. Garcia would’ve been on the “impact team“. It’s not like the Club’s courtly clientele would’ve been forced to hear her “embarrassing” accent while enjoying a leisurely game on one of the “recently renovated, international-sized” squash courts or dining beneath the ”coffered ceilings” of the Woodrow Wilson room. We send our condolences to Jo-Ann and wish her a successful job hunt. Stay classy, Princeton.

Princeton Review and Forbes Magazine Pretend to Rank the Ivy Leagues

Overzealous college applicants and nervous parents rejoice: the Princeton Review and Forbes Magazine have released their latest set of college rankings so that you can better make arbitrary decisions about where to apply this fall. First, behold Princeton Review’s rankings, which use the highly accurate method of spamming students with long and boring internet surveys and then hoping that they respond. After that, we’ll give you a rundown of the rankings by Forbes, which have stepped up the science by basing 17.5% of their scores on random reviews on RateMyProfessors.com (see their ‘method’ here). They concluded: “Ivy League schools fare relatively poorly, suggesting that their reputations might be a bit overblown.”

Without further ado, here are the Ivy Leagues, as ranked by PR and Forbes. Our reactions in italics.  Read the rest of this entry »

Shouting to be Heard From His High Horse, Dartmouth Columnist Calls Bankers Evil

There are a few paradoxes about Dartmouth culture that I have always found deeply troubling, chief among them the cognitive dissonance between the brilliance of my peers and their complete lack of intellectual curiosity,

That’s one of several sternly worded judgments Andrew Lohse, a guest columnist for The Dartmouth, bestows upon his university and classmates for their devotion to careers in financial services. This particular jaded verbal lashing of “the Wall Street Problem” was picked up by the New York Times’ Dealbook blog and has led to a commenting flurry on The Dartmouth’s site. Who knew so many people had opinions on the topic?

Lohse lays some of the blame on his classmates, and more on the “recruiting culture” at his college:

The whispered promise of recruiting stunts many undergraduates’ intellectual development at square one, commodifying their academic experience, papering over all other possible life paths or making them simply financially infeasible in contrast. It attempts to render insignificant the essential elements of a liberal arts education. Dartmouth is not a vocational school for investment bankers, nor should it be. We came to this school to probe big questions about why the world is the way it is — not to conform to a withering ideal of wealth and virtual power that we have been manufactured to hold dear.

Maybe Dartmouth is doing too good a job of explaining Why The World Is The Way It Is. It doesn’t take long for students to figure out that the easiest way to get ahead is to make a ton of money, and so they become bankers. But Lohse would rather his classmates “think about inequalities” and “[question] class-based systems of power and dominance.”

I can’t help but think Lohse has a future in consulting, an industry powered by the replication of successful business strategies. This is the third Ivy League daily newspaper column in less than a year that spouts invective at bankers, banks, and the colleges that cower in front of their demands, and all three have made significant splashes in this hypersensitive industry. But while one such columnist suggested incentivizing public service careers, and the other advocated banning banks from recruiting from campus, this one just seems really convinced that he knows better than you, and really intent on proving it:

Is this what it means to be ambitious in our culture? Should this be the goal of the valedictorians of Ivy League institutions? No matter how hard I try, I cannot think of more pathetic ambitions.