University flirts with top spot in Victoria’s Secret contest

| Managing Editor

Victoria's_SecretPenn State might have clinched the title for the number-one party school in the country, but Washington University may soon be the school with the sexiest underwear.

The University is currently in third place in the annual Victoria’s Secret PINK line competition. The winning schools will receive a Victoria’s Secret-sponsored collegiate clothing line that includes sweatpants, T-shirts and lingerie. Many Wash. U. students are looking forward to the variety the collection could add.

“I think it would be really interesting if we won. I don’t know much about it but I feel like Wash. U. would be a different kind of school. Plus, I’d like to see new designs for our collegiate collection,” senior Anna Studstill said.
Last year’s winners, dubbed “class of 2009,” consisted of 24 schools, including University of Missouri-Columbia.

This year’s competition may prove to be even fiercer. All four-year colleges and universities are eligible to compete, and the University is currently third in the latest round of competition, with 93,102 votes. Considering this competition, some students believe even third place is something to celebrate.

“I’m glad we’re number three,” freshman Joanne Li said. “A lot of the schools they had were really big.”

The top school, Rochester Institute of Technology, currently sports 109,366 votes in the competition.

To boost the University’s rankings, the Facebook group “Washington University in St. Louis for Victoria Secret” sent out a mass message to group members on Aug. 19, urging them to vote.
This Facebook group grew out of the one designed for the incoming freshman class, according to freshman Adam Cheng. Most of its 745 members are freshmen.

Cheng, one of the group’s administrators, invited his fellow students to join the cause. He claimed that the last time he sent a message, more than 30,000 votes were cast in under 24 hours. Washington University gained over 6,000 votes after the most recent push, but the school still remains in third place behind Rochester and the United States Marine Corps University.

As the competition heats up, some students are speaking out against it. Sophomore Justin Taylor was invited to join the Facebook group but declined, saying that Washington University does not need this connection to Victoria’s Secret.

“I don’t want this at all,” Taylor said. “We are a 150-year-old academic institution and we don’t need this.”

Cheng disagrees that this association with Victoria’s Secret would have any negative impact on the school or on its academic reputation. He believes that winning this contest would just mean that students could buy new clothes with Wash. U. pride.

“I think the students here are just like everyone else. We are young, we’re trendy and we like things that are new and fashionable. The name is still going to be prestigious even if we get new clothing,” Cheng said.

And there are other benefits, Cheng said, like school spirit and a way to connect to your fellow classmates.

Whether the Victoria’s Secret competition does “bring the school together” as Cheng believes it would, or becomes an unnecessary distraction, the clothing competition continues with Wash. U. as the underdog that has proved a competitive presence.

Students can monitor results and vote up to once a day at http://www.vspink.com/nomi​nate_your_school.jsp.