02/05/2016

Witch is Witch

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Hogwarts could have never been the only wizarding school out there. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire proved that, with the introduction of Durmstrang in Northern Europe and Beauxbatons in France. That had been enough for a while, until author JK Rowling annexed into her series a new set of schools that have apparently existed alongside Hogwarts this whole time, in anticipation of the film adaptation of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Which, to me and many Harry Potter fans, is getting kind of annoying — is dear old JK becoming the number one fanfiction writer of her own work?

While she capitalizes on this magical cash cow (sorry, but at this point she’s just transfiguring air into money) we figured we’d make up our own set of unknown wizarding schools as well. The new canon now has Uagadou in Africa, Mahoutokoro in Japan, Castelobruxo in Brazil, and Ilvermorny in the United States (somewhere in New England. Salem, presumably — snore.) With the introduction of even more wizarding schools, you need not worry about not getting your Hogwarts letter yet. Your admission will probably be somewhere else entirely.

Ragnofavik Grunnskóli

Location: Iceland

School pamphlet says: There is a reason why Iceland is one of the few countries in the world without a standing army: wizards, of course. Through the guidance of headmistress (and occasional singer) Björk, the Ragnofavik has maintained its position as the most prestigious magical school for artistically talented wizards and witches. While other wizarding schools are obscured to avoid prying muggles, Ragnofavik is in a totally normal-looking building in the country’s capital, because Icelanders are a sensible people, used to the bizarre (They do have Björk, after all.)

Notable alumni: Danish-American Gutzon Borglum who designed — and magicked — Mt. Rushmore and that super secretive dude who built the Pyramids in Giza all by himself.

Joseongyong University of Pyongyang

Location: North Korea

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School pamphlet says: The school was established when North Korean president Kim Jong Un’s grandfather discovered that he was a squib. (The bad haircut was actually an act of rebellion.) To make up for his lack of magical powers, he built a school can be accessed by entering a decommissioned rocket from the ‘60s. Any reports of nuclear testing or satellite launches in North Korea is most likely a botched potions project. Students caught messing up his or her wizarding studies — and thereby shaming the supreme leader — is stripped of his or her powers and sent to the Demilitarized Zone to get a good view of inferior, non-magical South Korea.

Notable alumni: Adolf Hitler, who graduated magna cum laude, and Ferdinand Marcos (junior term exchange student)

Cittá del Wizardano

Location: Vatican City

School pamphlet says: While your hyper-religious titas were telling you that reading Harry Potter is actually devil worship, a perfectly Catholic-friendly wizarding school is actually located in the world’s smallest country. To find it, one must simply look up the Sistine Chapel and whisper the password. (Note: the password used to be “Amen,” but things got tricky whenever Mass was being held.) Because of the emphasis on wizarding history and magical law, the school’s instructors are considered experts on the subject. Enrollment, however, has been waning lately. Their admissions office suspects that it’s because of one particular rule: like their muggle counterparts in the Vatican, wizarding seminarians are required to be celibate.

Notable alumni: Pope John Paul II and Jesus Christ (He came back for a master’s degree.)

Escuela Vaupésiña

Location: Colombia

School pamphlet says: With a strong rivalry against French wizarding school Beauxbatons, South America’s all-girls wizarding school is known for its rigorous Charms program — particularly glamour charms. It has been said that one should never trust a Vaupésiñita you meet on Tinder; she is mostly likely catfishing you. Cheerdancing is a huge sport in this school, with many students moving on to be accomplished athletes for the Knicks City Dancers and the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. Pablo Escobar allegedly laundered most of his ill-gotten wealth in Vaupésiña despite unsuccessfully getting his daughter admitted there, a story that will be revealed in Narcos season 7.

Notable alumni: Miss Colombia 2015 (expelled) and The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

Bulacan del Sur Academy

Location: Philippines

School pamphlet says: Hidden in the barracks of The New Bilibid Prison aren’t just the air conditioners and swimming pools of wealthy prisoners, but a portal into Bulacan del Sur, a school where class is rarely in session because of bad weather. (They’re wizards, okay. Not Storm.) Wealthy wizarding parents send their children to this school for outreach programs, not knowing that their kids just hang out at P. Burgos all the time to interact with “the natives.” They pride themselves on an “alternative wizarding program,” where students are required to exert themselves… only if they want to. In the last few years, Bulacan del Sur has developed a reputation for lenience, which makes it perfect for pupils who will likely inherit their parents’ wizarding conglomerates anyway.

Notable alumni: Juan Ponce Enrile, and the entire team responsible for putting a data cap on your postpaid plan

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