The U.S. News and World Report, renowned nationwide for its relevance to high school seniors seeking validation for choosing their safety school, has named UR as the nation’s premier institution for students suffering from intellectual insecurity.

“It was pretty easy, really,” College Ranking editor Sue Nee said regarding the process of finding a national leader in students who base their self-worth entirely on shouting down peers in casual conversation using facts they learned from a YouTube video.

“All we did was reach out to kids who gave our College Guidebook glowing reviews on Amazon. “I’m talking ‘This book led me to my dream school’ and stuff like that. We asked them where they ended up going to school and where else they applied, then we cross-referenced the ranking of their school with the others they applied to. The harder they struck out, the higher their school went on our insecurity list.”

“Schools were boosted higher when the kids who went to it got really defensive when we asked about the other places they applied; that helped Rochester out a lot.”

The Campus Times set out to hear what students had to say about UR’s new distinction, starting in the halls of Lovejoy.

Upon entering the building, shouts were heard echoing down the halls, emanating from the nearest lounge. Words became discernible as we drew near.

“Russia isn’t actually socialist though,” one enthusiastic first-year bellowed.

“You can’t seriously use that as a criterion for what Bernie is advocating for,” he continued.

“I’m just playing Devil’s advocate here,” another responded.

A girl sitting nearby chimed in, “Guys, you have the same stance on this; I don’t know what you—” but her words were cut short, trampled by the ongoing stampede of free thought.

Seeing how difficult it would be to interject here for their take on the ranking, we moved on to Carlson.

Students sat huddled around tables in the harshly lit basement. We approached one such group and asked if they could spare a moment for some questions.

“I’m drowning in work right now, like, you don’t understand, I’m BME,” one retorted.

“I got two hours of sleep last night after studying for my Signals midterm and I’m still probably gonna fucking fail it,” another student said. “Plus I have to finish this research paper, I’m getting published soon, and it’s just, like, so much on my plate. What’s your major, Journalism? You probably don’t get it.”

Before we could respond, another nearby student opted, “Hey now, they’ve got the right idea. Why didn’t all we just do some bullshit Humanities major?”

“Cause we want to actually make money,” responded the first. This conjured a throaty cackle from the lot of them as we walked on.

Dejected by the student body’s lack of cooperation, we turned to the Dean of Students for his take. We were greeted by his receptionist, who proceeded to wave a seemingly ancient wooden staff in front of his door.

“MELIORA,” she thundered, and the door miraculously began to glow blindingly bright as the seal of the University was suddenly burned into its wood.

The Dean then opened the door from within. “Come in,” he beckoned in dulcet tones. We informed him on the purpose of our meeting as we walked in.

“Oh, I know why you’ve come,” he said. “You see, I’ve been watching over you for quite some time. And I have heard about this so-called ‘ranking’ of which you speak. I watched you go to the first-years and to those dickhead BMEs, trying to make sense of all of this. But they could never give you the answers you seek.”

“You see, these rankings and metrics, they only serve to prevent us from fulfilling the grand destiny of which we have been endowed. These people, they loathe us for the greatness we possess. But child, you cannot be held down by these trivialities of…human existence. Come now, grasp what is yours to hold.”

The room began filling with a mist that quickly became impossibly thick, swirling with apparitions too grand to describe. Everything suddenly began to feel lighter, as if our bodies were becoming weightless, floating like a feather in the free marketplace of ideas.

We called out to the Dean, asking what strange, brilliant ecstasy he had shown us.

“This, child,” he said, “is the Rochester Effect.”



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