Wednesday, June 20, 2012

"I was never much of a UVA guy," by Thomas Jefferson

Hey UVA Board of Visitors:

Um, I am not criticizing any of the changes or anything. I mean, you guys do what you want, okay? It's not completely how I'd handle it - I'm kind of a freedom and transparency guy, myself. But this whole shadowy Star Chamber thing totally works for some people. It seems to be where the country is going.

So I don't want you to take this the wrong way, but I thought it was a good time to point out that my role in creating UVA has been way, way overblown in the past couple of years. I had help, a great deal of help. It was all done by committee, really. My name popped up on a couple of receipts, I signed some blueprints, and the thing snowballed.

What I'm saying is that as you go forward transforming this place into one seriously kick-ass regional correspondence school, you might want to make a few minor changes. Set the record straight, y'know? Kind of lower my profile, so we're more accurate.

Like, there are a couple of paintings and statues of me around the place that you might want to maybe swap out for something more contemporary. I mean, that big one in front of the Rotunda is just completely unnecessary. Talk about ego! It does not reflect what I did here. You ever hear about that store called Cool And Eclectic? They do these really nice life-sized statues of classic Hollywood celebrities. Wouldn't a giant plaster Marilyn Monroe doing her steam-up-the-skirt pose look great out there? It would really sell the place.

Speaking of Rotunda: I bet you are looking at that thing and trying to get some extra office space. People are probably telling you you can't knock out a wall or pop off that dome and stick a couple of extra floors up there. Hey, go nuts. It would actually help me if it didn't look so much like my house. And you seriously need more revenue. Having some law firms throwing you a rent check every month would help, am I right? So do it. I'm asking.

I know you might want to toss my name around when you have tours of the place. But I want to tell you, there are some other Founding Fathers who played an even larger role than I did. Like Adams. Yep. Bet you didn't even know, did you? John Adams was a super good friend of mine, and we stole some of his best ideas during construction. If you're in the mood for freshening up the brand, I've got an idea to run by you: John Adams Technical College. How the hell does that thing sound?! Go Fightin' Federalists! Ha.

I think you're doing a great job. Just a great job. And I can't wait to see how Adams Tech develops in the future. I know you've got big plans.

And as long as you leave my name out of it, I wish you the best.


  1. "...and a real estate developer from Virginia Beach shall lead them..."

    Personally, I particularly like the way the commerce school dean has been selected as the interim president. It sets the right tone. He seems more solid, and less frumpy, than that sociologist lady from Michigan. He looks like the kind of guy who understands that graduates of the Classics department aren't exactly going to be major contributors to the Campaign for the University of Virginia. (And how could they? No one speaks Latin anymore, dammit. And the Greeks are broke.)

    No, undergraduate business education represents what higher education should be about: Teaming to meet the global challenge. Vicious specialization. Getting those "electives" --- history, politics, literature, art, science --- out of the way early. Honing your PowerPoint skills with the Brothers. And no classes on Friday.

    It's what TJ, God bless Him, wanted all along: Programs of study designed and underwritten by Fortune 500 companies. Multinationals know what our best and brightest need to learn: marketing, finance, information systems, and, of course, "leadership." Multinationals know what our best and brightest want: a career path, and a guaranteed return on investment, right from the start. And many multinationals will match your generous gift to the Campaign for the University of Virginia.

    One needs only to know the identity of the first MBA to serve as President of the United States to understand that this is a strategy for success.

    Do it Hoos!

  2. No, they have keep the Jefferson connection. Consider the tagline:

    "Learn at TJ's in your PJ's."

    And I came up with that as an English major. Think about what someone with actual McIntyre marketing skills could do.


Related Posts with Thumbnails