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The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Don’t Follow This Flag

    Governor Eliot Spitzer announced recently that Stony Brook University was to become the “flagship” of the SUNY system, together with the University of Buffalo. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t see it.

    Certainly not flagship. Flagrowboat or flagraft, sure. But there is nothing commanding or majestic about Stony Brook, especially not compared to some other flagships like the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor or the University of California at Berkeley.

    Still, Spitzer insisted that Stony Brook is on its way to join those elite institutions, and in the same breath pushed for an increase in funding to pay for renowned professors to join the crew in his annual State of the State address in Albany.

    I remain skeptical because I have yet to see progress made on several other issues that, while they may not make a difference to the spectator who’s job it is to rank one school over another, make a world of difference to the students who are already here.

    Incidentally, other flagships like Michigan and Berkeley don’t find themselves atop lists of the least happy students in the country.

    Admittedly, the announcement by Spitzer did instill a sense of pride and hope. It can only be a matter of time now for New York State to pour millions of dollars into the campus in an attempt to reach that top tier of higher education, right?

    As co Editor-in-Chief of the Statesman, I was particularly delighted at the thought of pursuing the likes of Michigan and Berkeley, mostly because I can only imagine the resources afforded the staff at both the Daily Californian and the Michigan Daily.

    Men just as determined and as ambitious as Spitzer have used the term flagship in the past too. When Nelson Rockefeller set out to create a world-class university at Stony Brook, surely the thinking was that it would ultimately reach the upper echelons of, at the very least, the SUNY system, if not public institutions nation wide. So what happened? Let’s just say Rockefeller and those that followed, those captains, went down with the ship.

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