Ted O’Neill freaking out right now

We’ve found that this blog gets a lot more hits when we post about the Uncommon application and other

By Tim Murphy

We’ve found that this blog gets a lot more hits when we post about the Uncommon application and other such mundane topics. So here’s a juicy e-mail the student body received today from Dean of Admissions Ted O’Neill. I guess the switch from the Uncommon to the Common apps is going a little bit rougher than expected:

March 2008To: All UndergraduatesFrom: Theodore A. O’NeillDean of College Admissionstoneill@uchicago.eduAs you, and millions more, know, next year the University will begin toaccept the Common Application. However, as a part of our supplement to theCommon, we will continue to require that applicants respond to one of ourown essay questions posed in the old Uncommon style.We need to come up with something very good very fast, and thought that youmight be willing to help us. Please consider sending us a question thatcould be asked on this year’s Chicago supplement. You should have a prettygood idea of the kinds of questions that might delight the prospies andelicit a thoughtful answer.If your essay is selected we will be happy to give you credit as the author,and will consider giving you a prize beyond our undying gratitude and theadmiration of thousands of next year’s applicants.

Something very good very fast. Too fast, even, for necessary punctuation. We can only speculate as to what prompted such a ridiculous e-mail–it resembles the gibberish that I occasionally churn out at the end of a disastrous all-nighter, except instead of just accidentally sending it to my parents, it went out to the entire university community.From the last paragraph, it also seems that interested students will be in a position of strength to negotiate with the Dean. (Maybe he’ll even send you Bacon Salt!) So send in those ideas, ASAP. I’ll even start off with one of my own:Essay prompt #1: Do you reject and denounce Louis Farrakhan?