For as long as we can remember, we’ve been surrounded by rankings. Our dads shouted at the TV when there was an upset (Erin’s about basketball, Marina’s about assorted Russian music awards). We were both bummed when that girl from PE class suddenly removed us from her Top Eight on MySpace. And don’t even get us started on the Neopets games room.
As we’ve grown up, tragically forgotten our Neopets passwords and gotten more involved in the things we’re passionate about, we’ve noticed that our sensitivity to all the rankings out there has only increased. The seemingly arbitrary numbers assigned to the things we love, namely Dartmouth, suddenly seem to reflect something about ourselves and the choices that we’ve made. We came to this school for a reason, and it’s easy to let each evaluation affect our self-esteem.
But it’s also important to take a step back. There are some ridiculous rankings out there, and frankly, we’re the only ones who care about them. No one else is particularly interested in whether Dartmouth women are the hottest in the Ivy League (in case you’re curious, survey says we aren’t). What matters at the end of the day isn’t the countless rankings on the Internet but how we feel about this school and the people in it.
Maybe it’s a good thing that we felt all kinds of proud when Dartmouth beat out Princeton for undergraduate teaching this year, or that we felt personally slighted when the Colorado School of Mines beat out Dartmouth on the Forbes list of 25 colleges with the best returns on investment. It just goes to show how much we care about this place and its countless narratives, which could never be quantified by College Prowler.