It has come to our realization that Dean of Students at St. Mary’s College of Maryland (SMCM) Leonard Brown does not know how to play America’s beloved party game Connect Four. Multiple students have come out about playing the board game with Brown, only coming to realize that the college administrator does not know the rules of the game.
Connect Four has been providing people of all ages with easy going fun ever since its creation in 1974. A satisfying two-player game, its goal is to align four checker-like pieces in a vertical, blue grid before your competitor can. The game is recommended for ages 7 and up, so it would be expected that a grown man would be able to play the game with ease.
Brown offered to play Connect Four in SMCM’s renowned coffee shop, the Grind, with students as a way of bonding with them. The purpose of this was for the students express their suggestions with improving the college’s policies and to ask questions about his part in the college’s community. He called the phenomenon “Connecting with the Dean.” Unfortunately, this idea didn’t go as smoothly as expected.
“It was an awkward experience,” confesses one terrified student. “I just wanted to express my concerns regarding the lack funding that SMCM allots to the Wellness Center–that’s a big problem by the way–but Dean Brown was so focused on figuring out the game that he wasn’t even listening to me.”
Although the game’s average playing time ranges from one to 10 minutes, one student mentioned that an hour had passed and the game still wasn’t finished yet. “At one point, the dean reached over to my side of the table and tried to steal some of my pieces to rig the game. I was looking straight at him! Did he really think I wouldn’t notice?” The student mentioned that it was an emotional experience.
Every individual that went to “Connecting with the Dean” mentioned that nothing good came from the meetings. “Whenever I tried to mention an academic or administrative matter, the dean just politely shushed me and told me that he was focusing on the game. Couldn’t he have picked another game if Connect Four was so challenging?” An angry freshman reflected on her experience as she toggled with the idea of transfering to a different college.
Another student mentioned that he asked Brown to leave during the middle of the game, but when he did, the dean expressed distress. “The man threatened to report me to my lacrosse coach if I didn’t finish the game! I decided that it wasn’t worth it to stay and got as far away from the Grind as I could.”
Witnesses saw Brown scowling and pouting as he walked around SMCM after the scene. We tried to obtain a quote from Brown, but he declined to comment on the matter. Who knew playing such a safe game would deepen the divide between the faculty and students.