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Site Information
CollegePrinceton University
LocationPrinceton, New Jersey
DatesJune 23 - July 12
Years of Operation2006-present
Avg. Number of Students?
Courses Offered
CoursesEpidemiology | Global Politics: Human Rights and Justice | Human Nature and Technology | Politics and Film | The Mathematics of Competitive Behavior | Politics in the Middle East | Science, Technology and Public Policy | Human Nature and Technology | Race and Politics
Defunct CoursesMemoirs of War | Advanced Cryptology
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The Princeton site was created in 2006 for students who had aged out of the CTY programs. The JHU CTY program has been tweaking the site every year, and actually listening to students, so as to improve the quality of the new site. Only a handful of CTYers continue on to the Princeton program, but with the recent improvements in staff and the overall program, it should now be seen as a wonderful choice after CTY. There is a growing number of CTYers as of 2012, and Princeton lives up to the expectations well. The people are very wonderful. Students and RAs at Princeton often have a much friendlier relationship than students and RAs at regular CTY, probably because of the smaller age difference. It is not uncommon for students and RAs to sit together at lunch, etc.

Site Overview

The Princeton site, is of course, at Princeton University. A horribly complicated campus. Because it is so easy to get lost around campus, students are not allowed to wander/explore on their own, as well as for other obvious reasons to do with helicopter parents and the whole RA eyesight/earshot thing. (Although this rule was very relaxed at Princeton).


CTY PRN used Henry and Foulke in 2009. They are next to each other and are connected with an archway. Students are allowed to hang out on the quad outside of these buildings and around the archway during unstructured time. One building houses all the female halls, and the other houses the men. The girls' dorm also houses the health office, the main office, and all of the administrative offices. They are not air conditioned. Bring fans. The dorms have suites and singles with dressers, bookcases, desks, and closets. Some rooms have balconies, and all rooms have windows that open and come with screens to let cool air in and keep bugs out. Most bathrooms are okay. Third floor entrance one didn't have doors on their stalls, instead there were shower curtains that didn't quite do the job. Bring shower shoes, and be prepared for some awkward early morning bathroom incidents.

As of 2010, they students used the dorms Campbell and Joline. BRING A FAN, there is no air conditioning. Boys were in Joline, and had bathrooms interspersed throughout the building and laundry machines in the basement. Girls, however, had bathrooms in the basement and no laundry machines. Once a week they could be accompanied by an RA to laundry machines halfway across campus. Thanks, Princeton.

In 2011, students were housed in Henry and Foulke halls. The boys, laundry and offices were in Henry and the girls were in Foulke. Girls' and boys' laundry days alternated so that girls had greater access to laundry than in 2010. The dorms were not too bad, but on the third floor it was too hot and I highly recommend bringing a fan.

In 2012, students used Whitman college. Floors 1 and 2 were for girls, and 3 and 4 were for guys. There was air conditioning, although water were sometimes leak out of the air conditioning onto the CTYer. Everyone loves cold water mysteriously appearing on their shoulder. Dorms were arranged differently; some people had singles, while others had suites consisting two doubles and a common room. These were generally liked (except during blammo).

On a side note, Whitman College has triple-glazed mahogany windowsills. Upon which we heaped books, snacks, crumbs, and unmentionable fluids.

In 2013 it was again Whitman College Floors 1 and 2 were for girls, and 3 and 4 were for guys. There was air conditioning, although water were sometimes leak out of the some of the air conditioning units onto the CTYer. Dorms were arranged differently; some people had singles, while others had suites consisting two doubles and a common room.

In 2015 Whitman College was used for dorms again. Whitman has a multitude of interesting tunnels in the basement that were great places for "doing laundry" and other such activities.

In 2017 Whitman College was used again. Floors 1 and 2 for girls, 3 and 4 for guys. Temperature was generally okay, but your ceiling might start leaking. The thermostats on floor one are just for decoration and do not usually work. Protip: steal an armchair from a lounge on your floor and keep it in your room. It is comfy. Interesting things took place on the staircases, and lots of exploring was done!

Dining Hall

The Rocky dining hall is a hike from the dorms. Students are allowed to leave their dorms at 8 o'clock to walk to the dining hall. It is down the street from the droms, past the UStore, under an archway, up some stairs, and across a quad. The dining hall resembles the Great Hall at Hogwarts. There are long tables to sit at up and down the room and two circular tables. One sat at by the Oval Table Mafia. The food is decent, although frequently mislabeled, such as the Potato Puffs that were labeled as Eggplant Parmigiana one morning. There is a salad bar, pb&j station, fresh fruit, hot meals, cereal, a table of rotating desserts,and different flavors of ice cream at every meal. One of the favorite ice creams was Passionfruit Sorbet, that only lasted a day, for obvious reasons. Also, due to some legal precautions, signs are somewhat frequently hilarious. One morning, there was a sign that said, "Bacon (Contains Pork)"

The food sucked most days (most people would agree), although some things were truly delicious (such as general tso's chicken). Deserts were wonderful, and so was the ice cream.

As of 2010, the dining hall was shared with about six other camps at a time (mostly sports, but also the infamous JSA), making it very very crowded. Some of us (The 2010 Hipsters) managed to sit in the back room for a full week before getting kicked because it was supposedly "reserved" for the ID Tech camp (12 year old boys learning Comp Sci.)

Also in 2010, many bystanders were given a small show in the middle of their meal by our very own Daniel Ochoa, with his heroic shout, "I bet the neighbors know my name!" This occurred several times in the session, as well as at the last dance. Thank you, Dan, you crazy bastard. We CTY you.

In 2012, CTYers used the Gordon Wu Dining Hall. The dining space given to the CTY program was often too small, so some students snuck off to the other side of the building where there were other camps with small children. These children would take an eternity to scoop ice cream, of which there was always a gratuitous amount, even if it was only five tubs of mysteriously disgusting orange sorbet. The food was amazing on Sundays, great on Mondays, decent on Tuesdays, and revolting by Saturdays. This may have been due to repetition of food choices or recycling of leftovers into increasingly creative dishes. Tater tots at breakfast would be potato puffs for lunch and fried potatoes for dinner, rinse and repeat. If there was plain white tofu on Sunday evening, Tuesday would have some sort of Princeton Club Tofu Sandwich. Thursday's dinner would contain French Tofu Beef Casserole. Saturday's lunch: Brazilian Tofu Filet Mignon with Rice and Hummus. It is widely believed that the employees had, in the back room, a dartboard printed with countries, with which they decided what obscure, unrelated country's name they would append to their outlandish foods.

In 2015, the Butler Dining Hall was used. This was relatively close to the dorms, and on the way to class, so all in all a very good location. The food was decent, but the main attraction was the ice cream on offer, which probably singlehandedly lead to the gaining of weight from near 200 CTYers. We shared the space with ID Tech, as well as various sports camps and even a ballet camp, but it never got too crowded. There were some seats outside, although these were not often used on account of the heat, and sometimes, the rain.

In 2017, Butler was used again. The quality of the apples dramatically decreased between the first and second week, much to everyone's dismay, but the ice cream was always there for comfort. It was very hard to find seats at times because of the sports camps, but if you went at breakfast it was nearly a ghost town. The far side of the dining hall, when open, was usually less crowded. Pro tip: there is a second entrance to the dining hall if you walk around the left of the building.


All students have class (as well as Opening and Closing Ceremonies) in McCosh Hall. The building is abnormally cold in some classrooms, especially in the basement (dungeon).The classrooms were a bit of a walk from the dining hall, but it was a nice time to wake up, talk to friends, and walk extremely slowly to make morning classes a bit shorter. All classes have lunch at 12, which makes the morning class a tad long, especially when you don't get much sleep the night before...

McCosh 50, the location of Opening Ceremonies, the Talent Show, and Closing Ceremonies, was also the room in which several of the class scenes for Transformers 2 were filmed. This is not in any way an endorsement of the movie, just an interesting fact.

Fine, McDonnell, and Whitman were used in 2012. It was an easy stroll away from the dining hall, which all laid out nicely in a straight path.

McDonnell was again used in 2013

Jadwin and McDonnell were used in 2017. Classrooms are unbearably cold, so bring a heavy sweater to keep in the classroom at all times. It was a nice walk from the dining hall, straight down from the dorms too.

Main Office

The main office staff were quite wonderful. On many occasions, students needed to use the internet and copier, and they were always willing to help. They also had a water cooler that they always let students use.

Health Office

For obvious reasons many students avoided going to the Health Office whenever possible. If a student were found to have a fever, they would be sent home to recover. (aka torture!!!) So students usually went for things like bee stings and sprains and for medication. During these visits, the Health Office staff supplied pretty cups of cold water, and... CANDY! Yes, they gave you candy. How sweet! Anywho, the only problem with the Health Office was its location: the basement of the girls' halls. This meant that boys going for morning medications would have to be fob'ed in by RAs (who were usually just waking up, and often were outside after the students went for meds) or had to wait for a girl to come down for her meds. For the girls though, it was quite convenient.

Congrats to 2017 for not having a mono outbreak!

Student Activities


Princeton has three dances, one on each Friday night and one on the last Thursday. The dances are held in a multi-cultural house a few blocks away from the dorms, so the walk was not fun when wearing heels for the dance. It was nice walking back from the dance though because it would be nice and cool outside, so you would be at a comfortable temperature by the time you got back to the dorms.

In 2010, two of the dances were held in Forbes Hall and one somewhere else which the students liked better, but for some reason the staff didn't. The second location had a much larger dance floor, and was considered to be nicer by many. The author of the passage personally likes both locations. It is generally agreed that the first dance of 2010 was a disaster. The DJ played exactly three canon: Cotton-Eyed Joe, Stairway to Heaven and American Pie, in that order. The rest was hip-hop. It was DJed by one of the RA's who had never been to CTY before. Many students complained, however, and the next two were greatly improved and actually really awesome. Word of advice for future CTY Princetoners: ask around first week for who the DJ will be, find them, and plaster them with canon.

In 2015, during the first two dances, held in a nice frat house, the music failed halfway through. In the first dance, this lead to students beat-boxing and creating their own songs shortly, and in the second dance, the class of MOCB B lead about 100 people in a huge rendition of the Hokey Pokey, which had become a tradition for the sausage fest that was MOCB B. All the dances were fantastic, with every student having a great grasp on tradition and it being held in a great venue with great DJing. Also during the first dance, the attempted use of glow-sticks by a student named Tom and the repeated shouts of 'BIG CIRCLE!' led to him receiving the infamous title of 'glow-sticks guy'. On the final dance, when 'Cotton Eye Joe' was played upon request, around 30 boys, lead by the famous members of the Arty Party took off their shirts and danced around for 2 minutes, blatantly ignoring the shouts of RAs trying to restrain them. At the Talent show, 'glow-sticks guy' resurfaced as MC, and he brought the crowd into fits of laughter as he fell very publicly while trying to jump onto a stool. Check the My Life is CTY Facebook page for videos of said fall.

In 2017, all of the buildings where dances are originally held were reserved for other events, so CTY was stuck with a very small two floor area. The top floor was the dance, with a balcony area from which an SRA watched your every move, and the bottom floor was board games, movie, and a small outside area with strange iced tea, water, and snacks. The first dance was rough, with lights flickering and music being cut off every few seconds. Music was too quiet through all three dances. At the end of every dance, boys were to go down to the first floor to meet with their RAs and walk back to the dorms first, then the girls on the second floor would go. The first dance was cut short in the middle of "American Pie" due to a student crowd-surfing despite RA warnings. After the nevermores sang "Seasons of Love" at the end of that session's talent show, they immediately followed it with singing happy birthday to RA Peter, as there was a session-wide running joke about it being his birthday every day - a joke that drove him insane after we sang for him at every single hall meeting. (Needless to say, we made him age quickly - ha!). As for canon, there was a decent amount. Many canon songs were never played, but there was a decent amount. There were no traditional dances done except for a big outer circle during American Pie with a smaller RA circle. We'd do the leg lift thing (RIGHT FOOT FIRST!), and many Lancaster kids would do the chants (turkey hill! not even one! etc), but most of the other kids just rushed the RA circle and jumped up and down and joined in on the sex orgy chants. There were three slow canon songs per dance, and since the area was so small, it was hard to avoid RA tapping and flashlights. Stairway to Heaven and Forever Young were always played, as well as Mr. Brightside.

The dances have refreshments. These usually consist of cookies, chips, sprite, soda, diet soda, and water, which is a nice change from Lancaster dances, which don't even have water other than the water fountain. During the dances, a nicely air conditioned room plays decent movies, like Jurassic Park and Harry Potter 5.

One year, James Fish was the DJ for every dance. He is a CTY Carlisle alum, so he understood the necessity to play the Canon at every dance. He played a lot of hip hop, but that is unavoidable because that's what teenagers nowadays apparently like to listen to. But favorites were thrown in that everyone could dance to.

Some RAs patrol the dance floor with bright flashlights, or spied on young couples who left the dance floor for some alone time. Other, much more awesome R.A.'s simply cracked jokes, and otherwise let us young adults be the young adults that we are, particularly at the last dance. Thank you Clay, among the rest of you awesome people, for being reasonable and respectful, as well as pretty funny.


In 2010, students had two activities blocks a day: first a daily activity, then a weekly activity. The daily activities included henna tattoos, frisbee, arts and crafts, mafia, swimming, and occasionally things like silent football, Best activity ever, Worst activity ever, and Fun, which students are not allowed to discuss. Weekly activities included quiet time (a favorite, because it basically meant an hour and a half of free time), ultimate Frisbee, scrap-booking/slideshow work, manipulating objects (glowstringing and contact juggling!), and JC's spoken word workshop.

In 2012, new activities included: CrossFit (a great workout headed by RA Alex), Jog to Einstein's workplace, campus tours, Prison Break, Volleyball, Basketball, cloud watching, advanced moping, hat game. Most of the activities were pretty cheesy, but still fun nonetheless.

In 2015, site-specific activities were weekly, including prison break and treasure hunt. These took place in the main dorm building, and involved escaping without getting shot by a nerf-gun weilding RA in prison break, and finding certain items in the building in the latter activity.

In 2017, there were two activity blocks a day except for on Thursday, when there was a 2 hour double block. Activities included cloudwatching, basketball, pumping iron without iron, prison break, drip drip drop, escape room, letter writing, Disney sing along, ultimate frisbee, soccer, etc.


Sleepovers were legal on Friday nights for girls, and Saturday nights for boys. During sleepovers, students were allowed to order pizza and wings from the nearby Dominoes. Illegal sleepovers abounded, such that an entire hall's worth of guys lived in the same room for two weeks, and nobody cared. Yes, I'm referring to the Man Cave.

Many students liked to order pizza and Chinese food to their dorms even on nights when it wasn't legal. This was much easier for boys, as the girls' building housed the administration and health offices.

Another late-night activity favored by some students was sneaking out to the nearby WaWa to get sandwiches or whatnot. Often, students surprisingly did not get caught.

On the last night in 2009, DRL Allie legalized inter-hall sleepovers (still single sex, but you could sleep in any room in the building).

Orders were available from Dominoes in 2012.

In 2017, takeout was only allowed on the last night. Inter-hall single sex sleepovers were okay (technically, girls on Friday and boys on Saturday) and people got away with illegal sleepovers with very little chance of getting caught. Many snuck out to WaWa or into town in the middle of the night, and many also snuck into dorms for the opposite sex.

Casino Night

Casino Night, a tradition at several CTY sites, travelled over to Princeton. The first Saturday of the session, the students and staff travel to a dining hall other than Rocky for casino games. A marriage booth is available for the cost of $20 (in casino money). Any CTYer who ran out of money and wished to get more need only approach one of the Godfathers (RAs and staff members) for a task to complete.

As always, a movie option is offered for those uninterested in taking part in the games. Also available was a karaoke room.

Casino night was held on a Saturday night in another house a walk away from the dorms, past the WaWa that some students snuck out to in 2009. Said students returned in 2010 saying that it really wasn't worth it, so this was not repeated.

In 2013, EPIB executed Operation Not-A-Heist to rob the bank. The plan did not play well. Shortly after, students began bribing RAs to jail other students.

In 2017, Casino Night was crowded with barely enough seats for everyone that wanted to play. Everyone wanted to go to Patty's table, because she dealt the best cards, but anyone who didn't want to gamble mostly just considered it a social time. Many just did "tasks" (i.e. doing the chicken dance on stage or messing up RA Jeremy's hair) for money. Marriage booth was interesting, and the horse race was won by RA Allison.

Scavenger Hunt

Another fun weekend activity was the Scavenger Hunt, an event which pretty much had CTY students running around with their halls and grabbing random strangers from the campus in order to have them sing "Bah Bah Black Sheep," recognize the fact that the students lying in weird shapes on the ground ACTUALLY spelled out CTY, or being forced to listen to students ask for directions in what usually turned out to be an 'orrible British accent. There were also noncreeperish activities, such as getting a CTY shirt off Boyd's back. He had only two, which meant many groups were disappointed. (One group went so far as to take their own CTY shirt, put it on Boyd's back, then take it off, a very innovative solution.)

Also on the list were such things as finding a four-leaf clover, a bird feather, a business card, a map, and a flying cow. Yes, a flying cow.

There were several prizes for winning the Scavenger Hunt, such as an extra trip into town and candy.

The Scavenger Hunt ends at the Fountain, which halls must find for themselves within the time limit. If they do not arrive there before time is up, they are disqualified. The scavenger hunt's ending at the fountain was fun, because the students were all really hot from running around scavenging so they all jumped in to the fountain fully clothed. The wet students were then banned from participating in the next part of mandatory fun, watching a movie in the science building, because they were wet.

There was no Scavenger Hunt in 2017, but there was a "public art scavenger hunt" as an option for one of the activities, which was basically walking around campus with your friends.

Talent Show

The talent show was held on the other Saturday night in McCosh 50. It featured such memorable acts as JC's slam poetry, Dom fighting a bear, Kyle's hall being manly men, the Princeton incarnation of Monty Python Madness, and the Hip-Hop class' performance.

The 2010 talent show was entitled "the Blammies," and was won by Eli Turner for his amazing poetry. You should all bow down to him.

Town Walk

On offer in 2015 was the town walk, where students, accompanied by an RA in groups of their choosing, could walk around town and buy things. It was a nice diversion from normal mandatory fun at other sites, and it was a good way to fill the Sundays.

In 2017, a hall was matched with another hall for town walks. Popular destinations were Urban Outfitters, Starbucks, and Kung Fu Tea.



Risk: The board game, played a lot.

Card Games: They were played a lot. Mostly:

  • President (a.k.a. Asshole)
  • B.S.
  • B.S. Poker
  • E.R.S.

Mao (One Card Millard):

  • Rule 1: You're not allowed to discuss the rules.
  • Rule 2: There is no rule 2.
  • Rule 3: You are not allowed to be frustrated by the rules.


For all you Lancasterians, Princeton does Blammo. It is organized by the students (AKA our fellow CTYers)

In 2010, it was presided over by Race Archibold and Benjamin Boult. The game was intense. On the morning of Passionfruit, 8 people remained. Two dropped their spoons and ran for their lives and one was eliminated through a silly voice competition. I believe that left 5 finalists, whom all became God. (Correct me if I'm wrong, my memory is failing.)

In 2011, AJ Franchino, Ian MacArthur and Bethia Kwak presided over Blammo. On the morning of Passionfruit, there were approximately 16 players still in the game. Two had forgotten their spoons in the dorms or did not have their entire spoon on them and were eliminated immediately. A few more were eliminated by a "Simon Says" game, and more still by a contest to see who could balance the spoon on their nose. The final six were subjected to a planking contest, which eliminated one player to leave a final five winners (whose names will be posted soon).

In 2012, Oleck was the Blammo God. Unfortunately, the game only started on the last Monday. By Thursday, there were 47 people left and at that point every place including showers became fair game. By Friday morning, 20 remained. At the end of Passionfruit, spoons no longer protected players and all that was needed to blammo someone was to tap them with a spoon on their back and say blammo. Some players retreated to their dorms, which leaving those who stayed to duke it out. This CTYer was the last one remaining of those who stayed outside after Passionfruit; however, I got eliminated after another person came down stairs and in a chase I dropped my spoon. I'm not entirely sure if anyone won as Oleck stopped keeping track of who was in.

In 2013, Alfie bought spoons and organized the game with Esti. There were over 80 participants, including the head of site, a good number of RAs, and one somewhat confused TA. Blammo kills were cumulative (as points, to avoid confusion), and after the first purge, new players were added, resulting in a second round of about 80. There were purges Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. At the end of Passionfruit, the winner, Zeyneb Majid, was announced. She had 57 points, but isn't returning to Princeton. An extra, very beaten up box of spoons and the two god Blammo spoons (each being two spoons taped together with pink hello kitty duct tape), were passed down to Abby Menschik and Doug.

In 2017, with all the drama going on with Blammo being shut down at some other sites, Blammo didn't happen at Princeton. Also the fact that there weren't enough people interested, since more than half the people there were first-years.

Life Stories

Asking staff to tell the story of their entire life. If they refused to tell their story, it would be questioned out of them eventually. No subtlety necessary.


You wake up pre-dawn and go out into the quad to drink Passionfruit juice and discus CTY memories in a circle with no RAs watching the sun rise.

In 2009, the Princeton Passionfruit adopted a combination of the styles of Passionfruit at Lancaster, Carlisle, and Siena. To reflect this, Passionfruit was presided over by two emperors: Rachel Hall (Carlisle) and Julie Leghorn (Lancaster), and an empress, Johnine Licht (Siena).

2010's Passionfruit was held at an ungodly 5:30am and was organized by Logan Phillips. It featured many an emotional speech, and every single RA present.

In 2017, Passionfruit wasn't organized by a single entity, but enough people bothered the RAs about it that they provided juice and cups for students. People woke up at 5:30 AM and gathered on the patio area of Whitman College. Juice cups were passed around, rather than all being gathered at the center, and people got up in no particular order and talked. RAs and SRAs were present, and it started drizzling halfway. It was all very bittersweet as some of the shuttles had to leave in the middle of it.

External Links

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