Carleton College's student newspaper since 1877

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

A call to help our school

<oming week, we will be faced with two of the most important events in recent history: the inauguration of President Barack Obama and the annual Volunteer for Carleton drive. As both American residents and students of Carleton College, these events will offer unique opportunities for economic rejuvenation of both this country and this school, while at the same time laying the groundwork for structural change.

Economists have been describing recent economic circumstances as the biggest recession since the Great Depression. With credit markets freezing up, individuals losing their homes, unemployment threatening to climb into double digits, and America’s safest companies facing near extinction, Barack Obama has promised vigorous action with stimulus package of as much as $800 billion dollars in tax cuts and new spending. Carleton too has faced the consequences of what President Rob Oden described in his November 7th letter as a “considerable” decline in our endowment. Certainly the prudent decisions to delay construction of the Art Union and postpone ambitious endeavors for the recruitment of new faculty affect our lives minimally compared to most of our American counterparts, but the reality is that Carleton needs financial support more than ever. It must overcome the structural problems that leave it unable to provide “need-blind” admissions, build new facilities, and provide the best educational experience for its students.

Unfortunately, deficit spending is not a possible means for resolving the structural problems that affect Carleton College. But the Volunteer for Carleton phone-a-thon is perhaps the most important opportunity for students to invest their time in reaching out to alums who will help to provide that needed stimulus. An administration shackled by economic uncertainty will be reluctant to make the changes that we see necessary at this school, but an active student body that has proven its own investment cannot be refused. So come to Great Hall this Sunday between two and ten, or Monday-Thursday from five to ten to make some phone calls, write some letters, and invest yourself in a school that needs you more than it has since the 30’s. In the process of making bank for your school, you’ll not only have the opportunity to chow down on some gyro pizza and chana masala, but to think about what you expect in return for your investment.

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