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Dorow Prevails in Annual Big Screw Contest

By Zareena Hussain
associate news editor

A flurry of last minute donations allowed Neal H. Dorow, assistant dean in the Office of Residence and Campus Activities to pull ahead of the competition to emerge the winner of last week's annual Big Screw award.

The contest, which was hosted by the Alpha Phi Omega service fraternity, gives students the opportunity to vote, with their money, for the non-student member of the MIT community "deemed most worthy " of the Big Screw. "One penny equals one vote," said David Z. Maze '00, who coordinated the contest.

Dorow, who also serves as adviser to fraternities, sororities, and independent living groups, received $87.04 out of the total $324.24 raised. Each candidate can choose what charity he or she wishes the proceeds to go to. This year, proceeds will go to the MITCommunity Service Fund, which funds various community service projects in the Cambridge area. The total amount of money raised in the contest goes to a charity of the winner's choosing.

"Neal was doing this in a great deal of humor," said Andrew M. Eisenmann '75, associate dean for Residence and Campus Activities.

"I could see a lot of people who would want to screw Neal," said Iddo Gilon '98, Interfraternity Council president, "It's about time Neal gets what he deserves."

"He probably won on name recognition alone. Everyone loves him, that's why they want to screw him." Gilon said.

Dorow was traveling and could not be reached for comment.

Bradt garners second place

Professor of Physics Hale Van Dorn Bradt PhD '61, who teaches Physics III (8.03), came in second, receiving $65.79. Bradt also named the MITCommunity Service Fund as his charity.

Coming in third was Kenneth L. Williamson, a visiting professor from Mt. Holyoke who is teaching Organic Chemistry II (5.13) this semester with Professor Rick L. Danheiser. Williamson entered the running as a write-in candidate on Wednesday, Maze said. His candidacy became official on Thursday.

The contest was close between Bradt and Dorow throughout the week. By April 17, Bradt was leading.

"I couldn't believe it. I was very surprised to be anywhere near the top. Idon't have a big exposure on campus,"Bradt said.

However, on the last day of competition, Dorow received $25 more in donations than any other candidate in the competition, Maze said.

Less money raised this year

"People just weren't that excited about the candidates this year. The general sentiment was that the candidates we had available weren't really deserving." Maze said.

"None of the candidates had the kind of appeal that Unified had last year," Maze said. When it came to specific classes, "people who weren't in the classes weren't inspired to vote for them."

Last year, Unified Engineering (16.010, 16.020, 16.030, 16.040) brought in $242.84 to beat out Dorow and competitors. A total of $714.03 was raised in that contest.

"In the past, some of the candidates have actively campaigned. None really did that this year," Maze said.

"I wouldn't say he actively campaigned, but he did indicate that any contributions were welcome," Eisenmann said.

Second-place finish disappointing

After being in first place, Bradt's second-place finish was "just slightly" disappointing, he said.

He attributed his nonetheless good showing in part to the difficulty some students find taking 8.03.

"There are weeks where I think, Hmm, I think we're giving them too much,' but I think I've scaled back from past years," Bradt said.

Bradt's strong showing could also be attributed to his attempt to teach 8.03 two years ago in a seminar style. He called the experience "horrible" and said that it didn't work.

"I was royally panned," Bradt said. "It could well be that those students are still running around."

The rest of the candidates in this year's Big Screw contest were courses, including Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs (6.001), Thermodynamics and Kinetics (5.60), Integrated Chemical Engineering (10.490, 10.491), Introductory Biology (7.013), Physics II (8.02), and the biology project labs (7.13, 7.15, 7.16, 7.17).

APO will present award Saturday

Dorow will accept the award, a three foot-long left-handed aluminum screw, on behalf of the Office of Residence and Campus Activities this Saturday at the Alpha Phi Omega Spring Carnival. Gift certificates are being gathered to give to the runners-up at the carnival, Maze said.

The Big Screw contest began in 1967, when APO replaced its big queen contest. In 1975, the wooden screw awarded to winners of the contest was replaced with the aluminum screw that is used today.