In Defense of South-Western

The Mail

To the Editors of The Crimson:

The time has come to clarify some issues.

In the spring of 1973 I saw a notice in my dorm about summer jobs at $195 per week. I told a friend that only a sales job could offer an inexperienced college freshman that type of money, but decided to be open-minded and attend the meeting in Sever Hall. That night, I began my association with the Southwestern Company. For the next two years, I attended several meetings at Harvard, and each year went with an associate to visit the Dean of Students about the program.

Because rooms had been scheduled for us on campus, I was a bit surprised last year when Dean Epps told us he could not allow Southwestern or any other company to interview on campus, because of the University's non-profit status. I agreed to not meet on campus. While looking off-campus for meeting rooms, however, I decided to go ahead with a couple meetings in Harvard dorms. In retrospect, I can see that it was wrong.

Last spring, when The Crimson printed accusations that model UN staff positions depended upon experience with Southwestern's management-training program, I was "investigated" by Dean Epps. While those charges were clearly unfounded, in my 20-page report I mentioned the two meetings I held on campus, and accepted responsibility for them Dean Epps recommended disciplinary action, and the Administrative Board warned me not to disobey regulations or officers of the University.


My point is simple. An infraction of University regulations took place, and has not since recurred. The individual responsible (me) was punished to the degree which the Administrative Board thought was appropriate. Yet The Crimson reports that the Dean feels that talking with students off-campus is a violation of "the spirit, if not the letter," of his ruling.

It seems as if either The Crimson or the Dean has made it into some sort of crusade to "protect" Harvard students from Southwestern's appeal. Other schools encourage students to work with Southwestern, to the point of offering academic credit. What is it that Dean Epps understands so "perfectly well" that has managed to escape the attention of Senator Howard Baker (Tennessee), former Governor Fuller Warren (Florida), the Honorable Judge Harry Phillips (6th Circuit Court of Appeals), Dr. Franklin Murphy (former Chancellor of UCLA), and Albert V. Casey '43, MBA '48 (President, American Airlines)? These men, among others, enthusiastically endorse our program.

I am presently away from Harvard, having voluntarily decided to spend this year working full-time as a field manager with Southwestern--a position normally reserved for college graduates. It has been a most educational and rewarding year--hopefully, others will not be "protected" from the opportunities I've enjoyed. Sam M. Wee '76-'77

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