Princeton makes offers to 9.79 percent of applicants

by Cass Cliatt

Expands class size, financial aid: In keeping with the culmination of a five-year plan to expand the size of its student body, Princeton has offered admission to 2,150, or 9.79 percent of the record 21,964 applicants for the class of 2013. The expansion of the student body means the University’s admission rate for the class of 2013 keeps pace with last year’s 9.25 percent, even as this year marked the fifth consecutive year the University set a record for students applying for admission. The strength of Princeton’s financial aid program may be a factor in students’ decisions to attend, especially in light of the economy, said Dean of Admission Janet Rapelye.

Page 1 ... Full story

Encouraging aspiring poets to ‘risk something big’

by Jennifer Greenstein Altmann

Brenda Shaughnessy offers aspiring poets in her classroom a simple reminder: All poets essentially begin the same way. “Every writer, whether he’s the greatest living American poet or a total novice, has to start with a blank page,” said Shaughnessy, a lecturer in creative writing and the Lewis Center for the Arts.

Page 1 ... Full story

Grand master guides novices in Japanese musical tradition

by Emily Aronson

In a rehearsal room in the Woolworth Center of Musical Studies, students are blowing into their instruments, flicking hands over finger holes, shaking heads, and dipping chins up and down to create different sounds. Playing a few basic recitations absorbs all their concentration, as most in the class first picked up the instrument a few weeks prior and only a handful are experienced musicians. This immersion into new musical territory is the mission of the course “Masterworks for the Zen Flute: Music for Shakuhachi,” in which students across disciplines have the opportunity to play the shakuhachi, a Japanese bamboo flute, and to study its history and culture.

Page 3 ... Full story

Volunteer firefighter pilot program to roll out

The University is rolling out a pilot program in which staff members will serve as volunteers with the Princeton Fire Department during their work shifts. The one-year pilot program will include employees from the departments of facilities and public safety who already are trained as volunteer firefighters or who will receive training. The launch, which is expected later this spring, comes after more than a year of planning between University and local officials.

Page 3 ... Full story

Helping students see what’s at stake in language

by Jennifer Greenstein Altmann

To help her students dive into the study of 18th- and 19th-century poetry, English professor Susan Wolfson often has them scrutinize contemporary language that is not part of any poem. This semester, for example, her students discussed the difference between calling an economic program “a stimulus package” or “a bailout.” “These are not random, off-the-cuff pieces of language,” said Wolfson. “They’re carefully crafted metaphors being used to create a narrative.”

Page 6 ... Full story

Two win ReachOut grants for public service

by Jennifer Greenstein Altmann

Princeton seniors Mark Buettner and Vanessa Rodriguez have been awarded 2008 ReachOut 56-81 Fellowships, which provide the winners with a $30,000 grant to undertake a yearlong public service project after graduation. Buettner, who is from Kingsburg, Calif., will work with survivors of torture who now live in New York City. Rodriguez will set up a network of legal services for the homeless in her hometown of San Antonio, Texas.

Page 7 ... Full story

Managing editor: Eric Quiñones
Assistant editor: Jennifer Greenstein Altmann
Lead designer: Maggie Westergaard
Designer: Shani Hilton
Calendar editor: Shani Hilton
Contributing writers: Emily Aronson, Cass Cliatt, Kitta MacPherson, Ruth Stevens
Photographers: Denise Applewhite, Brian Wilson
Web edition: Mahlon Lovett
Subscription manager: Elizabeth Patten

The Bulletin is published weekly during the academic year, except during University breaks and exam weeks, by the Office of Communications. Permission is given to adapt, reprint or excerpt material from the Bulletin for use in other media.

Subscriptions. The Bulletin is distributed free to faculty, staff and students. Others may subscribe to the Bulletin for $30 for the 2008-09 academic year ($18 for current Princeton parents and people over 65). Send a check to Office of Communications, Princeton University, 22 Chambers St., Suite 201, Princeton, NJ 08542. Questions can be directed to (609) 258-3601 or

Deadline. In general, the copy deadline for each issue is the Friday 10 days in advance of the Monday cover date. The deadline for the Bulletin that covers April 20-26 is Friday, April 10. A complete publication schedule is available at or by calling (609) 258-3601.

Nondiscrimination statement. In compliance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, and other federal, state and local laws, Princeton University does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, religion, national or ethnic origin, disability, or status as a disabled or Vietnam era veteran in any phase of its employment process, in any phase of its admission or financial aid programs, or other aspects of its educational programs or activities. The vice provost for institutional equity and diversity is the individual designated by the University to coordinate its efforts to comply with Title IX, Section 504 and other equal opportunity and affirmative action regulations and laws. Questions or concerns regarding Title IX, Section 504 or other aspects of Princeton’s equal opportunity or affirmative action programs should be directed to the Office of the Vice Provost for Institutional Equity and Diversity, Princeton University, 205 Nassau Hall, Princeton, NJ 08544 or (609) 258-6110.