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Dear Class of 2021,

You may have spent hours pondering over your response to the simple question “Why Brown?” when completing your application. Now, as the University’s A Day on College Hill begins and hundreds of prospective students ascend upon College Hill, it is our time to answer the question — and, this time, we aren’t limited to a character count.

Whether it be the flexibility of the open curriculum, the opportunity to learn from esteemed (and, often, incredibly cool) faculty members or the ability to say you go to the school that Emma Watson ’14 graduated from, we at The Herald can offer many compelling answers to “Why Brown?”

While we can’t honestly say that Brown is anything akin to Hogwarts, we can say that the magic of Brown comes from the people within this community. Here, you’ll meet students from around the world who genuinely love what they do on campus and combine that passion with concrete action.

As often as the promotional pamphlets and brochures mention the open curriculum, we can attest to how it allows students to tailor their pathway during their time in college — and allows room for a little exploration along the way. You will always have the opportunity to carve your own course path. At Brown, you won’t be surprised to come across the aspiring medical student dabbling in history or the computer scientist who does aerial arts on the side. The same person you just played basketball with at the OMAC could be your teaching assistant.

As the editors of The Herald, we know that, even with the amazing people here, the University is not always the perfect bastion of academic learning. Many of the voices featured in our paper critique the campus and its shortcomings, often from a desire to see positive change that will affect future generations of students, such as yourselves. We hope that, in choosing Brown, you will help us to continue improving this school we love.

Brown has already been a school that inspires change. This is the school where its own female student-athletes led the charge in defending Title IX policies. It’s a school that created one of the first centers of public service in 1986, and, in 2016, unveiled the first-generation and low-income student center — not to mention the wide-ranging hubs of discourse and action that have been created in between. Brown fosters a culture of choice, independence and personal action in a way that few other schools can. We hope you’ll join us.

Editorials are written by The Herald’s editorial board: Lauren Aratani ’18, Matt Brownsword ’18, Rebecca Ellis ’18 and Kate Talerico ’18.


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