Posts Tagged ‘Morgantown’

The Mountainlair, WVU's student union, as viewed from above.

Image courtesy of wvu.edu

A recent survey conducted by University Primetime, a website that provides information on the activities within various universities’ social scenes, recently released their list of the top 100 party schools of 2014. I had seen where a couple of Facebook friends had posted the link on their pages mentioning WVU had made this list, and scrolled over it at first. Being the person I am, though, curiosity got the best of me, so I had to look and see where we ranked. Clicking on it and moving clear down to the number one spot, I made a shocking discovery: West Virginia University was listed at number one.

I lie when I say it was a shocking discovery. I wholeheartedly expected us to be placed in the top position. I would have been shocked to see us not ranked in the top ten, which after reviewing various other lists, I have come to believe is a farfetched dream. I thought nothing of it, considering we have been ranked one of the top party schools in the United States consistently for many years. What really got me going (and what caused me to write this piece) was when I read the introduction to their list. Unlike lists by Playboy Magazine and the Princeton Review (who, to clarify, is not affiliated with Princeton University, but is rather a company owned by private firm Charlesbank Capital Partners), University Primetime stated their sources:

“We used several different measures to come up with our Top 100 that included any party videos from Youtube, such as I’m Shmacked videos. Also, we surveyed students from across the nation, visited some colleges ourselves, and really dug deep to see who REALLY goes the hardest.”

This little bit of text here made me think. That’s all you have? You’re basing your research off of these factors? Immediately I noticed the flaws with this. Let’s break it down.

1.)  They based their research on surveying students across the nation. Okay, but how? Was it an online survey or some other random survey sample? Maybe a population of students at their respected universities were selected and only a motivated few (being those who party often) responded, but my guess is that it was based on asking the girls whose images are scattered throughout the list. They all love University Primetime so much that they made signs and took pictures posing with them.

2.)  They also visited some of the colleges themselves. They visited some of the colleges themselves. Which ones? Did they observe the campus as a whole or go straight to the clubs and frat houses to retrieve their data? 

3.)  Youtube videos as a source, but more importantly the use of I’m Shmacked. Who in their right mind would use those videos as a resource for a survey of this focus? Of course you’re going to find partiers in those videos. It’s the entire point of the series. That alone is enough bias to turn me away.

4.) Finally, the nature of the list. We are sixteen days into this year and we’re already named the top party school of it? I may as well claim that the top artist of 2014 is Bruno Mars since he fared so well last year. I mean, he is playing the Super Bowl this year.

I am not going to deny that we are a university that parties. Unfortunately, I’m around it every day. Even one of our professors found that only 1 in 5 students do not party. What I am saying though is that I have yet to see a survey on this issue that provides information with credible sources. Lists can not cut it for me any more. I need stats. I’m not asking for the world to see us as innocent, I am simply asking for somebody out there to publish a survey with explanations about how they gathered their information. If West Virginia University truly is the number one party school in the nation, then so be it! At least they have facts and figures to back it up.

Despite the negativity, I love this university to death. The academics are world-class and the opportunities provided are unbelievable. I don’t condone the party image, and would love to see it eradicated. Sadly, people take pride in that image, and it completely covers up the fact that this university and the grad schools within are also ranked as some of the top 200 post-secondary institutions in the United States according to U.S. News. That’s a little ray on sunshine shining down on our little sea of liquor.

Now, excuse me as I go to the pub and listen to some jazz. Oops, I said pub. Does that mean I drink and party now? Better call I’m Shmacked and let them know.

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1:48AM Why the hell am I starting a blog this late? Something has put me in a creative mood. Possibly because of my excitement and nostalgia after hearing ADTR’s “Right Back At It Again”. Possibly because I am really tired. Who knows? I’m listening to 1039/Smoothed Out Slappy Hours for the first time ever as I write this. Not sure I can make it much longer. Not that this is a bad album; I actually love it. I am just really tired. Maybe I’ll call it a night, and since it’s Morgantown on a weekend, I will more than likely be the first to do so. That about does it. Maybe I will stick to this and make it part of a daily routine. We’ll see.