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Simon (89)

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Busy Man.

Journal of Simon (89)

Monday March 25, 2002
04:34 AM

Trading Places

[ #3757 ]

The Shavian dilemma of choosing between offering a place to a suitably qualified candidate whose father has promised in return a gift which would be of benefit to generations of students, at the expense of a worthier candidate who would bring no such dowry in tow is not open to an Oxford Head of House.
 - Michael Beloff, President of Trinity College

You must understand that this is absolutely confidential. If this story gets out, we'll all be blown away.
 - Rev. John Platt, Pembroke College

Oh dear. So my old college has got itself a bit of a PR problem.

I'm in two minds about this. I'm sad to see John Platt go, because he was a good guy. On the other hand, what he did was stupid. Don't make admissions decisions if you're not the tutor for admissions.

On the gripping hand, if people are going to use underhand tactics like undercover reporters, what chance do you have? They're going to catch someone, and it was just unfortunate that it happened to be Pembroke.

And now Pembroke's left without its two best fundraisers, which isn't a great position to be in for such a poor college.

I'm thinking of writing a reassuring email to the Master explaining that this won't affect my giving to the college (which is incidentally true - I wasn't planning to give money to Pembroke before, and I'm still not.) since, although it might be news to the national press that Pembroke is corrupt, it certainly isn't news to any Oxford graduate.

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