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The Twin Quota Is Real!

Don't we all...

Don’t we all…

So it’s true that we’ve recently been on a conspiracy theory kick (as one commenter kindly pointed out).  Maybe we like the thrill, or maybe we just want to believe in something.  Either way, twin Eric Cohn is here with another totally serious, non-satirical conspiracy theory: this time about Columbia’s “twin quota.”

In 1954, the Columbia Spectator ran an article about six pairs of twins enrolling in Columbia.  They were never heard from again*.  All that remains is a glossy, faded image of smiling, dapper young men and women, forever preserved in the archives of Columbia—like one of PrezBo’s toupees.

But twins at Columbia have always had an enigmatic aura.  In February of 2014, a Bwog commenter, known only as “Anonymous,” informed the Columbia community that “there are like 3+ pairs of twins in CC16″ and explained the implications of this observation.  You can read the full comment below:

“is it true CC has a twin quota??? someone told me this yesterday! would explain why there are like 3+ pairs of twins in CC16!”

We can only speculate as to the identity of the commenter, but we do have this artist’s rendering of him or her below.

This is real.

This is a real rendering by a real artist.

Indeed, we’ve all heard rumors of a twin quota existing at Columbia, alleging that each year, Columbia is required to accept a certain number of twins from its applicant pool.  Bwog certainly had—and we were shaken to our Core.  Inquiring about the existence of a twin quota, we were met with a suspiciously brief response from CC Director of Communications Sydney Schwartz Gross:

“We do not have and never have had a quota for twins at Columbia College and The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science. The number of twins admitted into each incoming class can and does vary. We use a holistic review process when evaluating all applicants for admission. Just as admission to Columbia is not based on a simple formula of grades and test scores, nor is it based on quotas of any kind.”

Disturbing.  The Columbia administration simply cannot deny the facts any longer.  The number of pairs of twins at this school is staggering.  And who could forget the legendary founding of Columbia by the twins Romulus and Remus?  It all adds up: the twin quota exists and has existed for millennia.

Speaking of adding, let’s take a break and do some math:

  • According to the CDC, in 1994 there were around 97,000 twins born in the United States.
  • Also according to the CDC (you go, CDC!), there were around 4 million babies born in 1994.
  • This means that 97,000/4 million or around 2.5% of all babies born in 1994 were twins.
  • According to Wikipedia, Columbia enrolls 8,365 undergrads and Barnard enrolls 2,360.  This makes a combined undergrad population of 10,725.
  • Based on our calculation of 2.5% incidence of twins, there should be about 268 twin undergraduates at Columbia, or 134 pairs of twins.
  • That makes an expected 134/4=33 pairs of twins per class

So how does Columbia actually measure up to this?  Well, we don’t actually know.  But still the questions remain.  Does Columbia have a secret twin quota?  Did the administration surreptitiously murder six pairs of twins in 1954 to cover it up?  Did aliens build the pyramids?  Who directed Hollywood’s faking of the moon landing?  Where is “Obama’s” birth certificate?  Tell us what you think in the comments.

*by us because we stopped looking in the archives.

Our commenter via Shutterstock

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  • lol says:

    @lol never change, bwog

  • CC14 says:

    @CC14 Yawn.

    1. other 14 says:

      @other 14 seconded

    2. srsly says:

      @srsly do you even go here

  • #math says:

    @#math You have to take into account the probability of both twins being accepted which would be highly unlikely.

  • JT says:

    @JT You’re calculating for the number of individuals who are twins, not the number of twins. Nice try

    1. Heisenberg says:

      @Heisenberg Right it wouldn’t be 2.5% times the population, it would be 2.5%^2 assuming it was random.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Bwog…you are really going down hill this semester lol

  • damnnnnn says:

    @damnnnnn Bwog needs to take a statistics class before writing posts like these

  • Anon says:

    @Anon This was literally cringeworthy from top to bottom…probably the exact opposite of funny

  • Bwog didn't says:

    @Bwog didn't pass FroSci


    1. Anonymous says:


  • Hercules says:

    @Hercules Bwog, you wrote a huge post on twins and couldn’t sneak in a single reference to Fred and George Weasley????

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous My twin and I were Class of 2012. I’m just gonna assume we got in because there weren’t enough twins yet.

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