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Conduct Unbecoming...

Letter to the Editors

By Alexander Macmillan

To the editors:

Here’s what I can’t understand…Harvard’s Dean of Admissions, William R. Fitzsimmons ’67, often emphasizes “good character” as the quality Harvard is seeking when it decides among the thousands of otherwise qualified applicants for admission.

Indeed, he has gone so far as to say that Harvard would revoke—if it had to—the early action admission of a student otherwise bound by an early decision admission to Yale if the applicant tried to wiggle out of his early decision commitment in order to accept a place at Harvard.

The reason? By attempting to enroll at Harvard and forsaking his or her early decision commitment to Yale, such a student would be demonstrating “bad character” declares Fitzsimmons.

Well if a post admissions demonstration of bad behavior and “bad character” are grounds for revocation of admission, then how about it, Bill?

Blair Hornstine is, to quote John F. Kennedy, Jr. talking about several of his cousins, a “poster child for bad behavior” (Column, “The Blair Witch Hunts,” May 16). And Blair is certainly as “lacking in character” as some poor schlump whose only sin was that he wanted to get out of an early decision commitment to Yale!

Alexander Macmillan

May 18, 2003

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