Ithaca, N.Y. — Curious about the benefits of Greek life at Cornell?

Check out “The Power of 2%” entry that was on Cornell’s website. It will answer some of your questions — and may raise many more.

Enough questions that Cornell officials said the entry would be coming down after The Voice began asking about it.

Here’s a screenshot of the entry:

It appeared as a subsection under the “About our office” section of the “Greek Life”  area on the Dean of Students web pages.

The repeated drumbeat of “fraternity men” that punctuates each statistic does not note that the Greek system at Cornell includes sororities for women, too.

The statistics themselves might have a stale whiff. There have been about 53 U.S. Supreme Court justices since 1910, not 47, and more if you include those who were appointed prior to that year and still on the bench in 1910. Which dates the article to at least least 20 years ago, possibly much earlier.

And the attribution? “From an article in The New York Times,” it says at the top.  A search of The Times archives to find the original proved fruitless. “The Power of 2%” has multiplied and is all over the Internet — posted on numerous fraternity web sites — but not, apparently, on The Times site where it supposedly originated.

It also says that “all but two United States Presidents since 1825 have been fraternity men,” which seems unlikely given that — according to Rasmussen — at least seven presidents since then did not go to college at all.

“This falls under the category of what I would consider legacy data,” Travis Apgar, Associate Dean of Students at Cornell, said Tuesday.  “In other words, it was inherited many years ago.”

“We are in the process of updating our entire site, this will be removed.”

Asked about who wrote it and when, Apgar said, “I do not have any reference info in addition to what it states.”

Jeff Stein

Jeff Stein is the founder and former editor of the Ithaca Voice.