Caltech Ranks #1...

Rohit Khare (
Fri, 22 Aug 1997 01:33:47 -0400

...The #1 most 'stone cold sober' school in the Nation.

I found this tidbit in the sauna yesterday at the gym. Aside from the fact
that men had been sweating all over this finding for twelve hours, I found
it oddly amusing and clipped the Princeton Review's list of ten most and
least partying schools. Unfortunately, I left it there.

That begins our saga of tracking down this list on the Web. I've got
NOTHING. Unbuckingfelievable!

The original article I saw was in the Boston Globe, reproduced below. The
rankings, however, were in a sidebar graphic NOT on their website. The
original citation was AP. Let's go looking from there.

Over to the LA times, which, since the article is over 24 hours old, wants
$1.50 to tell me more about:

Where the Parties Are. . .and Aren't;

Wednesday, August 20, 1997
Home Edition
Section: Metro

"Do you know how to party?" was essentially the question asked of
56,000 college students in a recent survey. Judging from rankings
released today, Caltech students answered no. "This is not the place
for you if you want partying to be a major part of your college life,"
said Lin Jia, 21, who

Mind you, that damn abstract is 25% of the whole damn article (original was
201 words), but no citation to be had. Now, the LAT maintains an AP area.
Let's check there... no, "search" has not yet been implemented.

Drudge claims to point at a searchable AP, let's try : it
points off to the Washington Post's AP area, which comes up empty handed on
"stone cold sober", not surprising given DC's top brass...

The NYT, I assume is above such antics as falling for a wire story like
this, especially since they nuked the beautiful little stringer-written
'College News' weekly page a few years ago. Over there, Caltech pops put
such delicacies as "Quantum Computing, Part IV", but the Gray Lady ain't no
toga partier.

Secure in the belief all good stories must originate in craven press
releases, I check out yahoo's mirror of PR Newswire to dig out the original
Princeton Review release. Indeed, there is one, but since it's written by
happy-happy-joy-joy flacks, it only has the TOP lists. Guess there's a lot
of influential WVU alums editing the nation's pulpstock...

I capitulate. Off to the source itself. (not
or anything else -- remember when kaplan poached that domain back in the
92/93 metaverse/ era?) doesn't even have this press release on their

Finally, we get to their page of top10 party lists from their latest book.
It has the TOP and BOTTOM schools for hard liquor (Caltech #8, behind
Harvard), drugs (#7, behind Harvard), but only TOP lists for frat life
and... partying. Curses! Broiled again!

So unless this bottom-tem list resurfaces in the back-to-school Tech (Ma.
or Ca.), there's no way to reconstruct that ranking from the Net.



On a sobering note: Mt. Holyoke, Wellesley
National survey cites both colleges as where the party never begins

By Karen Russo, Globe Correspondent, 08/20/97

While not exactly a scarlet letter, being named to a national list of the
10 most ''stone cold sober'' colleges isn't necessarily something to
celebrate either. Unless it is to dispel a notion of being too uptight.

''The students at Mount Holyoke are serious students,'' said Kevin
McCaffrey, news director at the college, which, along with Wellesley, made
the list.

''But definitely not cold and sober - that's taking it a little too far,''
he said.

Just ask Kimberly Kedziorek, who will be a senior this fall. She recalls
celebrating the end of the spring semester by sharing drinks with friends
in a dorm room.

''Then we streaked the Skinner Green and played Frisbee all night,'' she

With five colleges and thousands of students a short bus ride away from the
South Hadley campus, there's plenty to do, she said.

''They aren't sitting in a dorm room, drinking beer, and wondering what
they're going to do on a Friday night,'' said Sally Lemaire, Mount Holyoke
executive director of the Alumnae Association. ''I don't think we have a
drug problem on campus, but there is a definite opportunity for partying on

Students and alumnae of Wellesley College, meanwhile, tended to agree with
the sober characterization.

''People really don't do keg parties here,'' said Wellesley student Jin Min
Lee. ''I've seen the upperclassmen drinking, but it's not the traditional
party campus.''

Wellesley alumna Cathy Cho agreed: ''The nature of the school attracts
serious students.''

This year's list includes three women's colleges: Mount Holyoke, Wellesley,
and Bryn Mawr in Pennsylvania. But at a time when women's colleges are
making a resurgence among top high school students, it is unlikely this
year's list will have any lasting effect on the number of applicants.

Last year, Mount Holyoke was also named to the list put out by the
Princeton Review. But applications this year went up 13 percent.

''As far as I can tell, students do their share of partying,'' said

''If Princeton Review had come here on a weekend, I don't think that they
would find the same results,'' he added.

The Princeton Review, which is not affiliated with Princeton University,
based its results in ''The Best 311 Colleges'' of 1998 on a survey filled
out by 56,000 students.

This story ran on page B01 of the Boston Globe on 08/20/97.

Rohit Khare /// MCI Internet Architecture (BOS) ///
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