Follow us on Instagram
Try our daily mini crossword
Play our latest news quiz
Download our new app on iOS!

Catholic senior gives up thesis for Lent

Thesis Binding
The Daily Princetonian Staff

The following content is purely satirical and entirely fictional.

As Christians on campus prepare to observe Lent — a period of fasting and prayer ahead of Easter — one tired senior has a very special plan for the 40 days. While many Christians observe Lent by forgoing pleasures such as coffee, sugar, or alcohol, Theo Ther ’23 will forgo the pleasure of writing even a single word of his thesis. 


“After Dean Dolan sent out that memo about respecting religious observances, I knew exactly what I had to do: follow my faith and fast for Lent. And by fast, I mean not work on my thesis, of course. It’s really distracting me from God,” Ther said.

When pressed further about his motivations for giving up his senior thesis, Ther added, “I was in the depths of Firestone, buried in my books, when I heard a rumbling from above and felt God speak to me. And he told me that it was his will that I reject the pleasures of thesising for a more discerning life.”

Ther confirmed he heard this rumbling and voice in the afternoon of Feb. 22, between 3 and 4 p.m., but he rejected the possibility that the noise was from the Tornado Warning-producing thunderstorms that struck the Princeton area at that time. 

The Daily PrintsAnything later reached out to Dean of the College Jill Dolan to confirm whether Ther would be allowed a religious exemption to the senior thesis requirement.

“While we constantly strive to respect the religious traditions of all community members, I checked on Theo Ther’s thesis deadline, and it does fall well after Lent is over. So, we do expect him to submit a thesis, even if he avoids working on it until the final weeks,” Dolan said. 

“Most students don’t even open a book until April. And historically, they’ve all been fine,” said Dolan, adding, “Sometimes, we even give them prizes just for our amusement! The faculty loves how students pretend they’ve spent months dutifully reading and writing.”


When presented with Dean Dolan’s clarification, Ther was quite despondent.

“I really thought that this was the perfect way for me to avoid my thesis — divinely inspired even! I just have grown so sick of my topic, but I guess I’ll stick to no meat on Fridays. That’s pretty easy since I limit myself to beer only on Fridays anyways,” Ther said.

Asked about his topic, Ther explained, “It’s on the Catholic Church’s response to heretic practices and interpretations since Vatican II.”

José Pablo Fernández García is a senior from Ohio. He promises he doesn’t have a thesis chapter due in less than a week that he’s trying to get out of writing.

Get the best of ‘the Prince’ delivered straight to your inbox. Subscribe now »