Farewell, “Seniors”…..?

The Senate Committee on Curricular Affairs at Penn State University has passed a resolution that calls for the school to stop using gendered terms such as “freshman,” “junior,” and “senior.”  The resolution recommends that the descriptors “first-year,” “second-year,” “third-year,” and “fourth-year” be employed instead (Daily Collegian, May 5th online). 

Inspired by this faculty decision, colleges and universities across the country are transitioning to less volatile vocabularies when referring to their student bodies.  Here are five examples from the past two months:

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Freshmen → Sentient Meat 1

Sophomores → Sentient Meat 2

Juniors → Sentient Meat 3

Seniors → Sentient Meat 4

Oral Roberts University

Freshmen → Jesus Kittens

Sophomores → Madonna Meerkats

Juniors → Lieges of the Lord

Seniors → Satan Stabbers

Harvard University

Freshmen → The Grateful

Sophomores → The Arrogant

Juniors → The Gratefully Arrogant

Seniors → Platinum Donors

U.S. Military Academy

Freshmen → Water Pistols

Sophomores → Super Soakers

Juniors → Surface-to-Air Missiles

Seniors → Cannon Fodder

University of Phoenix

Freshmen → Level 1 Borrowers

Sophomores → “How the F**K Am I Ever Going to Pay All This Back?” Insomniacs

Juniors → 7-Eleven Stick-Up Artists

Seniors → Inmates

May is not over.  There’s still time to call an emergency meeting of your school’s Faculty Senate.