Rutgers updates university song with gender-neutral change

    The words opening lines of Rutgers University’s alma mater will go differently when the song is performed during the football game against Arkansas.

    After decades of debate, “On the Banks of the Old Raritan” is getting a gender-neutral update.

    The 140-year-old opening couplet, “My father sent me to old Rutgers, And resolv’d that I should be a man” is becoming “From far and near we came to Rutgers, And resolved to learn all that we can.”

    The university Glee Club is planning to make the official debut of the new version Saturday.

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    Choir director Patrick Gardner wrote the new lyrics. He says that women account for half the university’s students and they should not have to sing that they “want to be a man.”

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