This has to be the happiest looking group of graduates in the country this spring—and not only because the smiles are painted on. They have successfully completed a course in Clownology as part of an experiment in letting students dream up some of the curriculum at San Diego State University. Led by grad student (and freelance clown) Rich Wise (who is draped full-length across the group’s front row), the 23 students spent 10 weeks of noncredit time learning the tricks of the falling-down-and-pie-in-the-face trade, including makeup, pratfalls and the temporary adoption of such names as Tootsie, Bummer, Trixie and Yo-Yo. Next year the 23-year-old Wise, whose nom de bouffon is Curly, hopes to get the course accepted for credit. “There was more work in this class than in many others on the campus,” said Curly with a face that wasn’t straight at all.