U of C College and GSB alum Bill Roule sends Tell us about Wednesdays, a Sun-Times piece about what it takes to get accepted:
“Produce a version of “Chicago Survivor” [inspired by the TV show "Survivor."] Use as your location the lush Gothic campus, laboratories, libraries, gymnasia, and residence halls of a Major American University. Establish a setting, make your rules, identify some players (selected from all of human history), and take us through a trial and its results. Profundity will be rewarded and true wit will certainly count in your favor, but too much intimate familiarity with the actual show may be a strike against you.”
I’ve got five pages of questions like these on my desk, faxed to me by the university’s admissions office, and as I read them I can only wonder: Are these people high?
“We wanted to create inventive and creative ways for students to tell us about themselves,” says Gerald Doyle of the admissions office. “We want to create an opportunity where we can listen to the student’s voice.”
But some of these questions sound like they were written in a dorm after midnight in the ’60s.
I was a sort of contestant myself in “Chicago Survivor,” from September 1977 to June 1979, and did not win. It seems the weird essay questions became part of the admissions process in 1984. In my day, they just asked what the three books (one non-fiction, two fiction) that had most affected (or maybe just impressed) you were. Everybody I knew listed The Lord of the Rings as one of their fiction books. But now?
“There is no line between when someone here is having fun and maybe thinking and studying and learning,” says Doyle.
There wasn’t a line in the ’70s, either — we didn’t have “fun.” Wusses!
Oh, and for the answer to “that first ground-breaking question,” read Rogue Moon.