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|Not that costly|
For two days in a row, I opened my paper to find the front page dominated by a story about Snooki and Rutgers. Much has been made of the amount of money spent, and the fact that Toni Morrison is getting less for her commencement speech, and that some students didn’t even want Snooki at Rutgers.
But if you delve deeper, you’ll see that with an undergraduate enrollment of just over 29,000 students, the cost for Snooki’s appearance is about $1.10 per student. The article that appeared on April 1 made mention that Toni Morrison is the first commencement speaker at Rutgers to be paid. So while, yes, Snooki is receiving $2,000 more than Morrison, Morrison is receiving $30,000 more than any past commencement speaker.
Every picture I have seen of this event shows the students in attendance having a great time.
Would I have gone to see Snooki? No. But that doesn’t mean that her appearance is a bad thing, and manipulating the facts to paint a negative picture of the Rutgers students involved is disgraceful.
Esther Levenberg, Elizabeth
Too much for Snooki
It is obscene and suggests a kick-back racket that Snooki received $32,000 for two hours at Rutgers.
I invited a colleague, the brilliant Sydney Brenner, Nobel Laureate, and discover of messenger RNA to spend two days and give several lectures to students and faculty for 1/10th Snooki’s pay. I invited colleague Sir Aaron Klug, president of the Royal Society and Nobel Laureate, to also spend two days and give several lectures to faculty and students for 1/10th Snooki’s pay. The $3,000 fee also paid for their travel from Cambridge, England. This was paid by Rutgers student fees.
I agree with George Zoffinger’s statement that receiving an honorary degree at a proper university should not require a fee. I agree with the Rutgers student who said Snooki would have come for a case of beer and the promise of sex with a Rutgers student.
Would Princeton or Harvard have invited Snooki or paid her $32,000? Would a Harvard or Princeton student even sleep with Snooki?
Jorge Pieczenik, Rutgers professor
Money better spent
While Nicole “Snooki” Polizzi was soaking up her $32,000 in Rutgers student fees, I was sitting in my master’s level information technology class.
I pay Rutgers nearly $4,000 a semester for six post-graduate credits. Included in the $4,000 are student and lab fees. My information technology class is a hands-on lab class that is not taught in the technology lab because there’s not enough lab space. I have to bring my own computer and power strip. (There aren’t enough accessible electrical outlets in the classroom we use.)
Those who cannot bring a personal laptop to class are presented old laptops with malfunctioning keyboards.
I come to this class from my full-time job in the nonprofit sector, where I work very hard at making sure individuals with physical disabilities and learning differences have an equal opportunity for an education. For this, I earn in a year a fraction more than what Rutgers paid Snooki for a couple of hours of “Study hard, but party harder.”
Tony Gruenewald, Edison
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