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Letter: We hope you got that free first-class upgrade

To the Editor:

Anthony Staehelin ‘10 ("A rare experience… that more people should have," April 10, 2009) misses the point. As senior IR concentrators, we are puzzled by Staehelin's focus on the presumed lack of student interest in international conferences and summits. While Staehelin is right to lament low student participation, he is wrong to assume a dearth of student interest. What he fails to mention is the lack of University resources supporting students' pursuits of such opportunities, which often entail significant costs.

The Model G8 Youth Summit referenced in his op-ed, for example, required a 450 Euro registration fee (about $600), round-trip airfare to Milan, and incidental expenses. While we commend the International Relations Program's regular announcement of these opportunities, such expenses remain out of reach or untenable for most students. Without calling for University support in the form of grants, scholarships, or even loans, Staehelin's piece merely preaches to the choir — highlighting the abundance of exciting opportunities that interested students simply cannot afford.

Nick Greenfield '09
Ruben Izmailyan '09


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