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In their "Open Loop University" concept vision, Stanford introduces "populi" as the next conceptual step after "alumni". Examples of usage follow.

"...we now have a populi of 215,000 ongoing students..."

"Populi could earn C3 by teaching master classes..."

Is this bad Latin? "Populus" does not mean "person as a part of a population/nation", it refers to the population/nation itself, so populus-populi is not similar to alumnus-alumni. Am I missing something?

If so, what would be a better usage for the second example? Perhaps it would help to use a word whose singular actually means a person, e.g. socius, amicus, civis even?

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    Alumni itself, as referred to former students, is corrupted Latin, IMHO: it is short for antiqui alumni, removing the adjective that gives sense to the concept – Rafael Aug 7 at 11:00
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You are right, this is terrible Latin. They could have said: "we now have a populus of 215,000 ongoing students". If it really has to be Latin, that is.

  • Cheers @fdb! Any thoughts on a better solution? I thought maybe "socius" conveyed what they were going for best. – Simon Korneev Aug 7 at 8:44
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    Populus has the advantage of being a collective. Socii might refer to (research) "fellows" or "associates" and thus not include the student body. – fdb Aug 7 at 13:12

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