Notebook: February 21, 1996

Board Raises Student Fees to $28,325
Goodbye Fed, Hello Princeton
Anthropologist Emily Martin Keeps Her Eyes Open
Senior Wins Sachs Scholarship

Board Raises Student Fees to $28,325

Trustees approve 4.6 percent hike, lowest increase since 1967-68

For the fifth consecutive year, the trustees reduced the rate of increase for undergraduate tuition and fees in approving a 4.6 percent hike in the cost of an undergraduate education, from $27,076 in 1995-96 to $28,325 in 1996-97. That is the lowest rate of increase in almost 30 years.
Next year, tuition will increase 4.96 percent, from $20,960 to $22,000; the room charge will go up 3.94 percent, to $2,900; and the board charge will increase 3.0 percent, to $3,425. (These increases are above the rate of inflation, which is less than 3 percent.)
Keeping undergraduate costs down was a high priority for the university's budget-setting Priorities Committee, whose recommendations were approved at the trustees' January 20 quarterly meeting.
Tuition for graduate students will increase to $22,000 in 1996-97, from $20,960 this year. Room and board will increase 3.0 percent, on average.
The operating budget for the 1996-97 academic year will be $525.4 million, including $62 million from the U.S. Department of Energy for the Plasma Physics Laboratory.
Though the operating budget presented for 1996-97 is balanced, the Priorities Committee report stresses that the budget for the current fiscal year is running a deficit estimated at nearly $4 million. The committee noted that a number of Princeton's peer institutions are experiencing more severe financial shortfalls and are trying to cut as much as 25 percent from their budgets.
To achieve some savings, the university last fall instituted a hiring pause for nonfaculty positions. In addition, the committee recommended a 4 percent cut in most administrative budgets over the next two fiscal years. The budgets of the library and the Office of Computing and Information Technology will be trimmed by $2 million and $1 million, respectively. Campus-wide, the belt-tightening will result in the elimination of between 80 and 120 positions.
Salaries, financial aid, the number of faculty positions, and major maintenance have been exempted from any budget cutting.

Goodbye Fed, Hello Princeton

Professor of Economics Alan S. Blinder '67 announced in January that he wouldn't seek a second term as vice chairman of the Federal Reserve Board and would return to Princeton to resume teaching this semester. After serving one and a half years at the Fed, he will share some of his war stories in Economics 332: "Money and Banking."
Blinder, who taught at Princeton for more than 20 years before heading to Washington, said his decision to leave the capital was an "extremely difficult" one, but he finally realized that "I was unable to cut the umbilical cord to Princeton." Also, his permissible leave from the university was up.
Blinder left Princeton in 1993 to serve on the White House's Council of Economic Advisers. A year later, he became President Clinton's first appointee to the Fed's board of governors.
Looking back on his Fed service, Blinder takes pride in helping develop "the most successful monetary policy in the history of the Federal Reserve" and keeping unemployment to 5 !/2 percent for a year and a half, while holding inflation to 3 percent or less.
In a statement released by the White House, President Clinton called Blinder's return to Princeton "a considerable loss for the nation. Alan is a powerful force for sound and sensible monetary policy. His tenure at the board was marked by integrity, intelligence, and candor."
Blinder says he hasn't ruled out returning to Washington in the future: "I'm not old enough to be put out to pasture."

Anthropologist Emily Martin Keeps Her Eyes Open

Working as a lab technician, volunteering as an AIDS "buddy," jumping off a telephone pole, conducting hundreds of interviews, taking basic science courses-Emily Martin has done all this and more in the name of research.
Martin is a cultural anthropologist whose recent books, The Woman in the Body: A Cultural Analysis of Reproduction (Beacon Press, 1987) and Flexible Bodies: Tracking Immunity in American Culture from the Days of Polio to the Age of AIDS (Beacon Press, 1994), address questions such as: What are the underlying cultural assumptions about women's bodies and the reproductive process? How do these assumptions affect women's perceptions of themselves? What does the idea of immunity mean to people? How are notions of immunity applied in the business community?
A professor of anthropology, Martin came to Princeton in the fall of 1994, after teaching at Johns Hopkins for 20 years. In her work, she constantly examines the way we live, exploring and questioning the assumptions that are so much a part of our society that often we are not aware of them.
Martin, who earned a BA in 1966 from the University of Michigan and a PhD from Cornell, became interested in the way we talk and think about reproduction when she was pregnant with her older daughter (she has two). Although she had specialized in China for 20 years and had written three books on the subject, Martin was casting about for fieldwork in the United States. Her pregnancy provided the answer.
During those nine months and regular visits to the doctor, she realized that labor was discussed as if the woman was not involved, "as if it was happening to someone else. It was the labor, the contractions, not I labor, my uterus contracts," she says. "My experiences led to discomfort, if not anger. I wanted to write a book that would wake people up. Women's wants and desires were basically being ignored to accommodate the medical profession's ideas."
Those concerns next led to exploring how biologists thought about reproduction. Martin found that the metaphors used in conjunction with fertilization impeded biologists' understanding of the actual process. Contrary to the accepted notion of "warrior sperm and damsel-in-distress eggs" (as Discover magazine has put it), the eggs of many species are not passive but release molecules to attract and anchor the sperm. There's evidence that human sperm are passive agents in reproduction and may actually avoid the eggs. Yet even scientists who studied this phenomena were still influenced by the accepted metaphors and described the sperm as actively "penetrating" the egg.
Her next book, Flexible Bodies, was "a different room off the same hallway," says Martin. The immune system seemed relevant, given the AIDS epidemic. As she explored ideas about the immune system, she found links between the business community's ideas about the necessity of being flexible and adaptable, and the way that people think about their health and their immune systems.
"The whole thing just kind of grew from one thing to the next, like crabgrass," she says. "I followed my nose where it led me." The ability to follow her nose is crucial to her approach, because the topics she delves into are not concrete and clearly defined-you can't use a thermometer or scale to measure a cultural trend. All you can do, Martin says, is try to be aware of what's going on around you. But while these subjects don't "jump out and announce themselves," they are pervasive.
In her daily life, she is constantly on the lookout for these clues. "I keep my eyes open. I try to push at the edges of things," she explains. Yet, this is not without its cost, because essentially there's no time off. "I enjoy it because it's interesting, but it's like being in the field all the time. It has its taxing aspects. When I'm between projects, sometimes I want to take a break and be left alone, and I hope I won't notice anything," she says.
There's not much chance of that.
-Andrea Gollin '88
Andrea Gollin is an editor at SmartKid magazine, in Miami.

Senior Wins Sachs Scholarship

Classics major Paula-Rose Stark '96 has been awarded the Daniel M. Sachs '60 Graduating Senior Fellowship. She plans to use the scholarship to study philosophy, politics, and economics at Oxford's Worcester College. The Sachs award provides tuition and support for two years of graduate study. For her senior thesis, Stark is exploring the handling of extortion within the criminal-justice system during the late Roman republic, studying court cases pleaded by Cicero. Her research concerns the ways in which the disposition of such cases reflects particular political ends, rather than a view toward legal precedent.
The Sachs scholarship has been awarded since 1970. Daniel Sachs starred in football and lacrosse at Princeton before going on to Worcester College as a Rhodes scholar and, after that, to Harvard Law School. He died of cancer at 28. The scholarship is given annually to the senior who best exemplifies Sachs's character, intelligence, and commitment, and whose scholarship is most likely to benefit the public.
Stark's extracurricular involvements often feature the public interest. She spent the past two summers as an aide to Detroit Mayor Dennis Archer and city council member Sheila Cockrel, developing and helping implement a proposal for a federally funded economic-empowerment zone within the city. She also serves on the national board of directors of the U.S. Committee for UNICEF.
Twice a month, Stark writes reviews of books for young readers for the Detroit News. She is also a photographer who occasionally freelances for the News while maintaining regular ties to The Daily Princetonian. A three-year veteran of the ice hockey team, Stark serves on the discipline committee.