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How Many Students Does It Take...

The New York Times, November 7, 2004

Old jokes never die on campus. They're just recycled for the incoming freshman class. Colleges have become the theme of at least one chestnut: the lightbulb joke.

Playing off student stereotypes, the jokes have popped up all over the Internet. How many students does it take to change a lightbulb at . . .

Princeton: Two. One to mix the martinis and one to call the electrician.

Cornell: Two. One to change the lightbulb and one to crack under the pressure.

Columbia: 76. One to change the lightbulb, 50 to protest the lightbulb's right not to change and 25 to hold a counterprotest.

Harvard: One. One to hold the lightbulb. The world revolves around him.

Yale: None. New Haven looks better in the dark.

Stanford: One, dude.

Tufts: Two. One to change the lightbulb and the other to say loudly that he did it as well as an Ivy League student.

Wesleyan: Wesleyan is boycotting General Electric. You know, military-industrial complex and all that.

Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Five. One to design a nuclear-powered lightbulb that never needs changing, one to figure out how to power the rest of Boston using that nuked lightbulb, two to install it and one to write the computer program that controls the wall switch.

Middlebury College: Five. One to change the lightbulb and four to find the perfect J. Crew outfit to wear for the occasion.

Connecticut College: Two. One to change the lightbulb and one to complain that if they were at a better school, the lightbulb wouldn't go out.

University of Virginia: 13. Ten to form a student committee to vote on whether changing lightbulbs is a violation of the Honor Code, one to change the lightbulb, one to hold the keg he's standing on and another to attribute electricity to Thomas Jefferson.

Santa Clara University: One. But you would never know about it because only Cal and Stanford get publicity for changing their lightbulbs.


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