With 217 bickering, Tower Club sets record
All but one eating club filled to capacity following Bicker and second-round sign-ins, signaling strong demand for club membership in the first year in which the four-year residential college system has been in place.
The selective clubs admitted a total of at least 400 students, while over 450 joined sign-in clubs during the first and second rounds.
Tower Club’s 217 bickerees represents the largest bicker class in Princeton history, according to club officers. Of those who bickered, 104 were accepted. Outgoing club president Jon Fernandez ’08 said that while this year’s class is larger than previous classes, the increase is “a testament to the bicker class,” adding that “it was terrible to have to hose as many as we did.”
Fernandez cited positive Bicker — where members were not allowed to comment negatively about bickerees during discussions — and the club’s social and academic diversity as main draws for prospective members. The club’s 48 percent acceptance rate dipped from 54 percent in 2007 and 66 percent in 2006.
Tiger Inn accepted 68 of 80 bickerees, an 85 percent acceptance rate, outgoing club president Chris Merrick ’08 said in an e-mail. The club’s acceptance rate — the highest of all the bicker clubs — held steady from last year’s 84 percent.
Merrick said that this year’s bickerees “have already shown dedication to TI by bickering despite our recent legal troubles.” In October 2007, Princeton Borough charged the presidents of TI, Cottage Club and Cloister Inn with serving alcohol to minors and maintaining a nuisance. The charges against all three club presidents have since been withdrawn.
Cottage Club accepted 94 new members, president Vince Ley ’08 said an in e-mail, but he would not confirm the total number who bickered. Twenty-four individuals who bickered were denied acceptance to the club, however, according to an e-mail sent from club officers to members that was obtained by The Daily Princetonian. The 80 percent acceptance rate is an increase from last year, when 67 percent of those who bickered were admitted.
Cap & Gown Club accepted 80 new members, according to an official list obtained by the ‘Prince.’ Club president Mark Bur ’08 declined to comment on the club’s bicker numbers, but reports from several members indicated that about 105 students bickered.
Ivy Club officers did not respond to repeated requests for comment. Several members have said that Ivy took 64 out of 115 bickerees, or 55.6 percent. This is lower than last year, when about 58.5 percent of bickerees were accepted. Over the past decade, Ivy has consistently taken between 60 and 70 new members each spring.
Quadrangle Club is the only club that is “not at full capacity,” said an officer familiar with the situation, who was granted anonymity because the club did not want to release numbers while still accepting new members. Between 40 and 50 individuals joined the club during first- and second-round sign-ins, the officer added, almost equivalent to last spring’s 45 new members.
Cloister added 39 members in second-round sign-ins, bringing its total new membership to 90, club president John LaMonaca ’09 said. LaMonaca said that Cloister is not instituting a waitlist since “we’re right where we want to be at.”
Colonial Club added 19 members during the second round of sign-in to bring its incoming class to 125, its maximum capacity, according to club president Beau Thomas ’09. The club plans to institute a waitlist for those who could not be accommodated during the second round of sign-ins.
Charter Club is also at capacity after raising its cap to 90 members during first-round sign-ins. Club president Mike Coolbaugh ’09 said in an e-mail that the club already has 15 people on its waitlist and is still adding prospective members to the waitlist. The club will grant “full Sophomore membership” to those on the waitlist, though they are “not guaranteed a spot come the fall.”
Coolbaugh added that in the past, “spots become available over the summer,” and that sophomores who are currently on the waitlist will be offered full membership in the fall to fill these spots “by the discretion of the officers, based on their enthusiasm and dedication to the club.”Terrace Club remains capped at 110 members, having accepted only one member off its waitlist since the first round of sign-ins, said club president Jon Feyer ’09. This year’s low attrition contrasts with previous spring semesters. Feyer estimated that as many as 20 sophomores withdrew from membership last spring.