In response to Harvard University's elimination of the Early Admission program, the Brown University Admissions Office announced yesterday plans for a new admission system based on the popular Milton Bradley board game, Hungry Hungry Hippos. Brown's Early Decision program has also been scrapped in favor of the game.
University officials have hailed the move as innovative and efficient. Otm Shank '88, a secretary at the Admissions Office, told reporters, "The school is just continuing what the founding fathers started all those years ago. I mean, the New Curriculum sounds nice and all, but let's face it, how new can it be after, like, 40 years of use? We just needed something new to call new, and along comes the New Admissions."
The University plans to implement the New Admissions system immediately, taking effect for the class of 2012.
This new system makes the whole college process easier for everyone involved," said another admissions officer. "Green hippo means accepted, yellow means wait list, orange means rejected, and pink, you get another look. Before this, we'd have all these arguments and we'd actually have to think about the quality of the applicant. And speaking of applicants, now things are much easier on their side as well. Whereas before you'd have to fill out an application, write an essay, and complete other frivolous things like doing well in high school, now all you need to do is write your name on a marble. And high school teacher recommendations are a thing of the past. We just cut out another useless, time-wasting step in the admissions process: applying."
When asked about the Program in Liberal Medical Education (PLME), Mr. Shank replied, "We have a special edition of the game for PLMEs. One of the hippos is wearing nurse costume with a little plastic toy stethoscope, and his mouth is also a lot smaller."
Admissions officials are praising the system most of all for its accuracy and reliability. Miguel Morales, admissions officer for the New York City region, said he could finally "get a feel for each candidate's true personality." He continued, "Before the New Admissions system, the college process was a total crapshoot. None of it made sense to anyone, especially us at the office here. Thanks to Hungry Hungry Hippos, we now have a reliable formula for accepting students."
Not all the responses have been positive, however, and the University has come under harsh criticism from minority groups and supporters of affirmative action because the standard version of the game ships with marbles that are all white.
"This announcement comes as a huge disappointment to me and the entire minority community here at Brown," said Seamus Fernandez '09. "The University was moving in the right direction with the report on Slavery and Justice, and I'm afraid a rash change like this pushes us right back to the 1840s. Come on, Brown, that was so amateur."
"I do think the system overall is pretty good, though," continued Fernandez. "I'd just like to see some changes made. I'd definitely like to see more marbles of color. Also, having a yellow hippopotamus in the game is a refreshing thing to see."
"Of course, we will be working the kinks out of this new system in the months to come," said President Ruth Simmons in a letter to the University. "But honestly, when has Hungry Hungry Hippos ever let you down?"