by Jack Snap
Footnote free. Citation less. The newer, lighter PhD for students wanting to complete their entire program on the phone in record time has arrived. Imagine: A slick little campus concept you can carry in your pocket, smaller than a candy bar.
“Our new PhD in common knowledge will soon capture its market share,” said interdisciplinary program director Claire Wonkus, who claims to hold degrees in Mass Delusion (MD) and a Master of Antics (MA) [both unverified]. “I sweat bullets in graduate school so it is my dream to reduce global warming.”
The program will be completed entirely online through the College of the Northsouth. For a minor fee, followed by steep monthly payments and a three-year contract, a phone on which to complete the degree will be included in each student’s costs. Colors available are the school colors of slate gray, hot pink and beige.
Drawing curricular inspiration from late-night comedy shows that “interview” students on campus about basic facts previously considered common knowledge, and using mini-program guides modeled on fortune cookie messages along with the most favored tweets in cyberspace, PhD C.K. will soon be the top choice for those wanting to gain a strategic advantage in a flooded job market.
The program has hit some minor snags. A slogan was in the making via an international contest, which temporarily stalled due to the highly allusive nature of some entries. The grand prize was reported as free semester in the program, conditional upon full enrollment for three additional years.
The commencement ritual of bobbing for apples, at home, and with no apples available, was meant to represent the means to a tenure track job after graduation. This proposed option has been deemed “not fair” by Northsouth’s services for disabilities coordinator. “Some students are allergic to fresh fruit,” Roland Landro said. “Others may suffer from hydrophobia.”
Students’ diplomas will be delivered by phone, thus adding an innovative solution to the phrase “not worth the piece of paper it’s printed on.” A bar code will allow alumni free access to campus career services and the campus bar.
Many agree that it is offensive to state that an expert is “someone who knows more and more about less and less.” Wonkus reframes, saying, “We want our graduates to know more and more stuff that everyone else already knows about.”
After graduation, Wonkus promises students will be able to attend the professional conferences of any discipline they choose and fit right in. Before they graduate, students can choose their own academic concentration according to their dreams.
“My degree will be English-flavored!” exclaimed applicant Moria Stuart, who read a book once.
“Mine will be peppermint and in history!” countered applicant Jon Dole, who currently grows mint on his apartment balcony and watches a lot of old movies.
Wonkus emphasizes that the program is not to be confused with the PhD in Common Sense offered by a competitor.
“That one looks worthless to me,” she warned. “Students spend so much time reading about philosophy and other soft subjects they can’t focus on what’s really trending.”