Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.
Vice-President of Admissions Jom Bick ‘90 confirmed a long-standing rumor that “bougieness” has been a criterion for Swarthmore admissions for years, amid a steep rise in students wearing Canada Goose parkas.
“Tour guides and interviewers can easily spot the distinctive circular Canada Goose logo. These overpriced $900 jackets are a simple way for us to determine who is bougie enough to be let into Swarthmore,” Bick said.
The policy has been an unmitigated success, with over 80% of the Class of 2020 now seen sporting Canada Goose. For the Class of 2021, the college hopes this figure rises to 100%.
In explaining why the College is trying to attract bougie applicants, college officials pointed to the long tradition of holistic admissions.
“SAT scores, GPAs and extracurriculars are all important qualities we examine when reading a student’s application. However, we must also take into account an even wider range of factors, including bougieness. This is essential in creating a ‘rounded’ class of students that reflect the diversity of America,” Bick said.
However, the administration refused to comment on another lingering suspicion – whether bougieness was a category in the U.S. New & World Report’s college rankings. In the struggle to keep Swarthmore College competitive with peer institutions, college admissions may have been pressured to allow more and more bougie students.
While the “bougie” criteria was previously met by wearing North Face or interning at McKinsey, Swarthmore College admissions decided to tighten requirements after the 2013 “Spring of Discontent,” when students launched massive protests against the administration and Board of Managers.
After conducting a thorough internal review, the college identified a need for more bougie students. They also discovered that wearing Canada Goose had a high correlation with an applicant’s potential for bougieness.
Nonetheless, administrators are scratching their heads of how 80% of such a large student body wearing the coyote-fur Canada Goose jackets still managed to vote for Mountain Justice’s fossil fuel divestment referendum in February.
Now that Canada Goose is ubiquitous on campus, the college may again consider adjusting its requirements. Admissions staff are reported to be choosing $1300 Moncler jackets as a replacement.