Let it be known: you do not have to be a strapping, beautiful, devastatingly charming bank executive and no friend of the city of Atlanta to have university students get their panties in a bunch over your speaking engagements at their school. Members of Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs are "up in arms" over Vikram Pandit's selection as their commencement speaker this year.
They apparently don't give a rat's ass that Citi had a profitable first quarter and they're seething at the perceived notion that Vik doesn't jibe with the "the spirit of what public affairs is supposed to be," like a their top picks-- Stephen Colbert and Hil and Bubba Clinton. They also say this isn't about the financial crisis, they've just never liked Wall Street period, 'cause of the bonuses ("[Pandit] represents an industry that, even when it was stable and not in crisis, paid itself outrageous salaries," fumed Daniel Safran-Hon, 29). And while they may not have said it, there's likely a sizable group of students not too keen on hearing Pandito, who has four degrees from Columbia and is a trustee, use his favorite word ("global") and variants thereof ("globality," "globalness," "globes in your face," "globes deep") 983 times over the course of his speech. Unlike the organizers at Syracuse, protesting Jamie Dimon's speaking engagement, no dance party or Facebook protests have been scheduled. Yet.