George Washington University, often our Republic's most expensive, in the upcoming academic year is dropping maid service for first-year* students. New students will now have to vacuum their own rooms and clean their own private bathrooms, if such things matter to them.
GW insists that the move isn't economic. Rather, it's based on the conclusion that their housekeeping staff can't fulfill their duties if this duty is included. Still, GW pledges to hold the line on housing costs for the coming academic year to reflect the loss of service.
With all the economic and social insight of an undergraduate, one student is quoted with the complaint that a place charging $54k a year ought to be able to provide a decent housekeeper. We'd love to compare this student's political and social idealism as expressed in the student's application essays to this highly enlightened, sensitive comment.
All this causes us to celebrate the enormous diversity of American higher ed. We have IHEs that do basic housekeeping for the dear children. We have IHEs that require students to work every day on a ranch. We have IHEs that charge several arms and legs. We have IHEs that charge a mere bag of shells. We have IHEs that overtly indoctrinate in one or the other of every imaginable ideological direction, and IHEs that purport to remain objective.
Hail the American Educational Experiment! George Washington himself would be proud.
Excuse us--Jeeves, please warm up the Bentley and bring it around. We'll be leaving for the club in twenty minutes.
*For those with better things to do than follow trends in higher ed, we note that "first-year" has replaced the gender-specific "freshmen" as the preferred moniker for the unwashed hordes who arrive on our nation's campuses as new students at the end of each summer.