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EOP IV

The Equality of Opportunity Project gathers amazing data on the incomes of college graduates and their families. The New York Times provides an overview and this summary (pdf) of Williams data. Day 4 of 5 on this topic.

married

1) Are you surprised by the variation in marriage rates among NESCAC schools? I am! Why would 61% of Colby students be married but only 48% at Trinity? Should we be pleased or upset that the number at Williams is, at 57%, below average?

2) There is a great senior thesis to be written about changing patterns of marriage among Williams graduates. In the US population, marriages rates over the last 50 years have dropped dramatically. I think that this is true among the graduates of elite colleges, but can’t find the relevant data. Certainly, the percentage of heterosexual male Ephs who were unmarried at age 40 was very low, at least through graduating classes in the 80s. Single digits? My sense (contrary opinions welcome!) is that the marriage rate among female Eph graduates is lower, probably because of hypergamy.

3) Could a determined Williams president affect the marriage rate? I bet he could! Should he? I think so. Few things correlated better with life outcomes than marriage. (Of course, there are huge correlation/causation problems.)

4) Consider this recent comment, from “girls @ williams” on the annual fall in love post.

Contrary to what seems to be the general belief here, women at Williams do not actually exist as a selection pool from which to pick your future wife / future child-bearer. Of course, I’m sure that the group of men who spend their time obsessively posting distorted facts about the College at which they spent their peak years and now continue to pathetically long for are among the most attractive personages to have ever graduated the hallowed halls of Williams *sarcasm*.

That seems uncharitable! I was urging Williams male undergraduates to ask out female undergraduates. Does our commentator want more of that or less of it?

Perhaps more importantly, it seems that this Eph has not been given “the talk” by her family. EphBlog is here to help! Nothing, other than religious belief, is more associated with female happiness in the US than marriage. You will never be prettier than you are now. You will never have such a high quality pool of potential husbands to pick from. Choose one now. And invite EphBlog to the wedding!

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#1 Comment By Williams Alum On January 26, 2017 @ 8:35 am

DDF –

I don’t want to say you are an asshole, but I find you smug and aloof (apophasis). You can’t treat women like objects (which was the tone, even if I can’t find a quip embodying it, of that fall in love post), then pretend to have no idea what someone is talking about when they claim you did so.

You are either ignorant/dumb to not be able to see how that post reads, or willfully dishonest to recognize it but pretend it doesn’t exist.

Either way, I don’t think you are a good person.

WA

#2 Comment By Whitney Wilson ’90 On January 26, 2017 @ 1:24 pm

@WA. Based on personal experience, I would strongly disagree with your statement that you don’t think DDF is a good person. Whether that comes through on the blog is, of course, a personal opinion, so I won’t say your statement is “wrong,” since it necessarily is your opinion.

That said, this is a pretty dumb statement from the post: “You will never be prettier than you are now.” While undoubtedly true for some, it is almost certainly false for others. I suspect Mrs. DDF might disagree, too.

#3 Comment By Williams Alum On January 26, 2017 @ 1:43 pm

WW –

Any thoughts on the first two paragraphs of my comment?

WA

#4 Comment By Whitney Wilson ’90 On January 26, 2017 @ 2:34 pm

I haven’t gone back to look at the original “Fall in Love” post (though in general its hard to disagree with the overall sentiment), but I do agree that the last paragraph of this post does not come across well:

Perhaps more importantly, it seems that this Eph has not been given “the talk” by her family. EphBlog is here to help! Nothing, other than religious belief, is more associated with female happiness in the US than marriage. You will never be prettier than you are now. You will never have such a high quality pool of potential husbands to pick from. Choose one now. And invite EphBlog to the wedding!

It reads as though a major reason for women to come to Williams is to find a husband. I don’t think this is what DDF has in mind, but I understand your concerns. I don’t think the post is suggesting that women are “objects,” but instead might be read as I suggested in the first sentence of this paragraph. I think DDF’s sentiment would be equally applicable to men, by the way, and I think that’s kind of what he meant. But I suppose (OK, I know for sure), that DDF is more than capable and willing of speaking for himself.

#5 Comment By alum 11 On January 26, 2017 @ 2:38 pm

http://jezebel.com/mens-favorite-ages-are-20-21-22-and-23-a-data-dive-1731660984?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+jezebel%2Ffull+%28Jezebel%29

okcupid did a study in 2010 that showed female attractiveness to presumably heterosexual men peaks between 20 and 23.

#6 Comment By John C. Drew, Ph.D. On January 26, 2017 @ 4:36 pm

When I taught at Williams, it didn’t seem like there was a lot of dating going on among the students. I got the feeling it was sort of discouraged, as if a girl might be shunned on campus if she had a boyfriend.

The girls who were dating went out of their way to let me know they had older boyfriends off-campus, usually with great jobs in New York or Boston.

My message for young guys at Williams College is that you’ll meet plenty of hot, smart girls after you start your career and are established enough financially to attract beautiful girls in the 20-23 range.

#7 Comment By Williams Alum On January 26, 2017 @ 4:37 pm

DDF –
I don’t know that you are necessarily a bad guy, but I think you sacrifice intellectual honesty to get a rise out of people, and I think that is not an admirable trait. Sorry if I was too harsh this AM.

JCD, I think you are a bad guy.

WA

#8 Comment By John C. Drew, Ph.D. On January 26, 2017 @ 5:35 pm

WA-

Really? Some people see me as a courageous hero. Maybe you need to re-evaluate your value system.

See, https://youtu.be/p_6X8cPdveg

#9 Comment By Williams Alum On January 26, 2017 @ 6:41 pm

JCD –
I feel confident in my value system. Maybe you need to re-evaluate your value system.

WA