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In response to the Triangle Forum question: is the Hanover Admissions Program racially and economical'y discriminatory, Miss Julie Field, a sophomore at Duke University writes:
THOUGH I REALIZE that, not being a member of the Hanover College community (invited to contribute to theTriangle Forum), I am speaking out of turn, I would like to respond to your Forum question of Friday, Nov. 22.
I HAVE MADE numerous visits to the Hanover campus, and I find it attractive in many ways. It is peaceful and seems ideally conducive to academic pursuits. The low-key greenhouse attracts, it seems, the brighter flowers, but even they express an overwhelming need for escape, at least on weekends. The atmosphere is a little too heremetic, and the intellectual cross-pollination which occurs in so circumscribed an environment produces ideas inbred to an astounding degree of similarity.
I HAVE MET and observed several black students at Hanover; they seem to be experts at the art of assimilation, and with those whom I have seen, it is easy to be colorblind. They have become accepted by the Hanover College community through cultural de-pigmentation (I cannot judge their willingness to undergo this process).
AT HANOVER, A poor student or a black student would find an ideal schooling in middle-class Americanism; dependent upon his capacity for adaptation, he could become part of the culture to which, we assume, the whole world aspires within the space of four years.
PERHAPS I AM aware of this because I attend a fairly large university in the south where, because of racial tensions, nearly absent in the isolation of Hanover, black students have taken on a bushy militant new identity. Perhaps because they were never (with few exceptions) as well integrated into the student body as are Hanover Negroes, they have not hesitated to make a nearly unanimous break with the rest of the student body.
THEY ARE ARROGANT and one senses a confusion in their aims, but at least they are allowed to be themselves. This is part of a national trend, and a rather quiescent example at that; how has Hanover (at least ostensibly) escaped it? Again, I would lay blame (some would give praise) to the isolation and ensuing isolationism of the campus.
AS MY COMPARISONS are with an institution which is not exactly a bastion of student revolt, my stance must be fairly moderate. I have been very cordially accepted on the Hanover Campus and would probably have been content there as a student in my WASP skin. But were I at the present time an intelligent black high-school senior, I would find the Hanover campus unappealing and a threat to the preservation of my own identity.