Southwestern Recruiting Again For Summer Book Salesmen

Harvard students who have sold books for the Southwestern Publishing Company in past summers will be recruiting undergraduates again this spring for summer jobs with the firm.

However, the students emphasize that this year's recruitment efforts are not part of a company-organized campaign, and that in no way does the profit-making company desire to endanger Harvard's tax-exempt status.

Southwestern has offered summer sales jobs to Harvard students since 1974. Later that year, Archie C. Epps III, dean of students, specifically banned the company from operating on campus, after a student recruiter conducted a company interview on University property.

Epps said yesterday he knows of no breaches of University regulations by Southwestern this year, adding, "No students may act as a representative of the company in either the letter or the spirit of the law."

Ira Wilson '79, who has worked for Southwestern the past two summers, said yesterday the company is not involved in recruitment efforts here.


"Epps feels I am a representative of Southwestern and that I get paid to talk to students about job. He said that any time I talked to anyone about the job. I was acting illegally," Wilson said. He added that he has talked to students about Southwestern this year.

Probably Not Kosher

Epps said it is "very likely" that Wilson's actions violate University policy.

Last year Wilson allegedly used a Phillips Brooks House (PBH) room for company purposes under an assumed name, Epps said, adding Wilson's purpose "was clearly to deceive us."

"My friends and I wanted a place to get together just to talk. If it was a Southwestern meeting, I would not have participated and would have done anything I could to stop it," Wilson said, adding that the assumed name was the result of a PBH employee's misunderstanding.

No Hassles

Sandy Smith '80, who sold books in El Paso, Texas last summer for Southwestern, said that virtually all campus recruiting is "done by word of mouth, the same as a normal conversation." He added that sometimes Southwestern recruiters contact students who may not have asked to be contacted.

However, Smith added, "There is no organized on-campus recruitment effort, no one student who coordinates the Southwestern recruiters, and absolutely no breaking of university regulations."

Southwestern's business practices at Harvard have gradually improved over the last few years, Epps said.

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