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New campus pub to be good for both Greeks and non-Greeks

Longtime MetaEzra readers know that I'm not the biggest fan of Cornell's Greek system. To me, the same benefit it provides in terms of the campus social life, mentoring underclassmen, and helping to build campus communities could be provided through other means (e.g. a stronger residential college system, more extracurricular clubs and student societies, increased co-ed co-ops, a campus union or pub) without any of the negatives of the current system (e.g. hazing, institutionalized sexism, unnecessary cliques, a culture of binge drinking, and the grooming of 'bros' and 'sorostitutes').

But, unfortunately for my own opinion, the Greek system isn't going anywhere anytime soon. Still, I would like to see it's influence at Cornell wane over time. (Although to be fair, it doesn't completely eclipse all other social life at Cornell. After all, the majority of students are non-Greek.)

That's why the news that Cornell will be opening an over-under pub in the Straight next semester is so exciting. It will simultaneously improve the social options for independent students, while also relieving the Greek system of some of the burden of hosting parties for the campus. That in turn will help the Greek system return its focus to some of the more positive and constructive aspects of its existence. So it's a win-win for the Cornell community.

Ideally, the pub will turn into a common gathering place popular with undergrads, grad students, faculty, and staff, fostering more community spirit and interactions among all Cornellians. A mega-CTB, if you will. Or think of the University of Wisconsin Union, which I had the pleasure of visiting last weekend:

Keep your fingers crossed that the Straight's Terrace will be open to pitchers of beer as well. And that they'll be serving Apricot Wheat. Because as Slope Day tells us, if there's one thing better than the view from the Slope on a warm day, it's the view from the Slope on a warm day with a good beer in hand.

But what should they call it? My vote would be for "Elmhirst's". Major props for the first person who can post and tell us why. (Late Update: That should be Elmhirst, as in the elm trees which used to beautifully guard the entrance to the Straight.)

Matthew Nagowski | Posted on October 15, 2011 (#)

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