I don’t know about you, but I was outraged when I learned that the geniuses at Kean University were actually under fire for purchasing a $219,000 conference table!
Let me point out a few facts that I hope NJ Assemblyman Joe Cryan considers on his witch hunt to “investigate” this purchase.
First off, the true value of the table was $500,000 (if it were made in the US, according to very logical, very in tune with modern life university president Dawood Farahi). So 219K is a bargain!!! There’s no other way of looking at it.
Second, we’re not talking about some dumb “table.” There are all sorts of bells and whistles that add to the meeting attendee experience, including an illuminated world map and a motorized, two-tiered turntable.
You paying attention? This means that anyone sitting at this table will be able to INSTANTLY identify any country, ocean or longitudinal coordinate with unprecedented ease! Talk about a priceless investment. I mean, what do you expect meeting goers to do, check google maps? Are you insane?
Also consider that the motorized glass turntable will result in immediate cost savings of $2.43 per conference hour (my estimate) in terms of the reduced distraction time associated with busy meeting attendees asking, “Can you pass the coffee?” over and over. Not to mention the eradication of the unquantifiable irritation associated with these requests.
This is an instant productivity boost, and when you consider a conservative 20 conference hours, 40 weeks per year at $2.43 per hour, the savings add up rapidly – I bet they break even in 96 years!
Third, if Kean wants to keep up with the times and attract today’s demanding prospective college students, it’s gonna take a heck of a lot more than a conference table (albeit the world’s most badass conference room table!). Consider some amenities that other colleges are offering:
- Free movie theater showing first run movies, complimentary snacks (High Point University)
- Ice cream truck serving free ice cream (High Point University)
- Five Star steak house (High Point University)
- Free massages for students (High Point University, many other colleges)
- Rock climbing wall (every college, including High Point University)
- Ropes course (University of South Florida)
- Indoor driving range (Temple University)
- Indoor beach..no, I’m not kidding (University of Missouri)
- Lazy River (Texas Tech, LSU, University of Missouri and many other colleges)
Correct me if I’m wrong, but did you see any mention of “Awesome Conference Table” in this list?
Of course you didn’t. Because there’s only one college that “gets it,” a certain little school in The Garden State that starts with a K and rhymes with “lean.”
And don’t give me or my good friend President Farahi any guff about the rising cost of tuition, student loan debt, lack of jobs for college grads, blah blah blah. I’m sick of those stories, aren’t you? One (awesome!) conference table will not affect student loan default rates one iota.
So I come today to praise Kean, not to bury it. Congratulations on taking an important, but only a baby step, toward the big time!
See you at the next meeting!
Andrew Lockwood is the best selling author of How to Pay Wholesale for College and publisher of The College Success for Less Bulletin. More information is available at www.CollegePlanningGuru.com