Citadel Class Ring, Women At The Citadel And Vmi = Why?
Q: Reciently in the news I saw that VMI and the Citadel (SP?) had their first
women graduates. This comes after all the resistance put up by both
institutions to go co-ed.
Now this question is meant not as a sneer at the graduates, but as a serious
question I hope people in this NG can shed some light on.
Why would any woman want to go to either of these places? I know that these
places have high academic standards, but why bother to put up with the
selfish ignorance and outright hatred of some people who attend these
places? I know that not every person who goes to these places is a closet
klansman and that you will find facists in attendence in some way, shape or
form at any university. But why put up with guys who boo when you recieve
your class ring, or set fire to your clothes or are so intimidated by a
strong-willed woman that they act like such cry babies?
Like I said. I am not trying to slam the innocent at either university.
The bigots know who they are. But what is the motivating factor to get so
much grief when college is hard enough already? I am trying to understand
what would compel a woman to deal with this much crap when they could simply
take their money and their contributions elsewhere to where they would be
appreciated instead of feared?
A:Don't forget that these places bond by year. Freshwomen spend more time with freshmen than with upperclassmen, and the whiners were upperclassmen. If you're a freshwoman showing up on campus for the first day, you're not going to hear "oh no, there goes the neighborhood" from a *freshman*. He showed up there the same day you did, and *both* of you knew it was going to be coed when you applied. In fact, apparently VMI application rates for both men and women have skyrocketed recently, so there are a bunch of guys out there who prefer a coed VMI to an all-male one. These guys won't be whining about female classmates if they're accepted. As for the first female students, every year there were be less of those students who mourned "the good old days" and more students who applied to coed VMI/Citadel in the first place. If the first women graduated in 4 years, nearly the entire school was coed by the beginning of their senior year (it would take a bit longer to go fully coed - there are always a few who take 5 or 6 years to get out). In some cases, it may be family tradition. If your dad, granddads, great -granddads, etc. went to VMI and your mom, grandmoms, great-grandmoms, etc. didn't go to college at all, it may be more tempting to follow Dad than to follow Mom. If you have no brothers, that may be extra incentive for Dad to want to see you follow in his footsteps. In some cases, it may be wanting to get your money's worth. Women aready have been subsidizing VMI and the Citadel ever since those places started using taxpayer funds instead of being completely private (I'm not counting state support for individual students a la Pell Grants, Stafford Loans, etc. here). Virginia taxpayers can't simply "take their money somewhere else" since they pay for VMI, UVA, etc. whether they study there or not. In some cases, it may be settling for second best. Apparently, the U.S. Military Academies - which accpeted women years earlier - are harder to get into than VMI and the Citadel. A woman who applies to West Point and the Citadel, and then gets rejected by West Point, may still view the Citadel as preferable to a civilian school. In some cases, it may be lots of optimism. After all, if no women had applied to hostile mostly-male schools then Harvard, M.I.T., etc. would still be 90%-100% male today. However, women did apply in large numbers and now those schools are much less sexist and thus more educational. In some cases, it may be lots of optimism for other reasons. Some people just relish a challenge, and few college experiences are more challenging than those of the first women at these schools. After all, military schools are supposed to prepare you for fighting, killing, war, conflict in general, that kind of thing. A school offering more conflict is not necessarily worse than a school offering less conflict if this is one's chosen field.
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