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Wed Mar 13, 2019, 11:20 AM

I Worked In College Admissions And Had To Admit A Bunch Of Mediocre Rich Kids

Celebrities like Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin don’t need to resort to criminality to get their kids into elite schools — college admissions already favor the wealthy.

My first official job after graduating from college was with my alma mater’s admissions department, where I’d been working part time since my freshman year. I gave tours to potential students and their parents who had expressed (unfounded) concerns about gender-neutral bathrooms in the dorms; then, in my final year, I interviewed high schoolers and submitted write-ups about their performance to their official admissions files. When I was given the opportunity to stay on full time as an associate, the decision practically made itself. I’d graduated a year early to save money on tuition, so I didn’t mind hanging around campus for a little while longer. I would live cheaply in staff housing, get swiped into the dining hall by friends who were still students, and start chipping away at my student loans by the time the grace period ended. Win-win, I thought.

My college was a small, private northeastern liberal arts school. It was a good school — not the best or most competitive, but a very respectable institution. I applied there early decision, suspecting that my status as a good-but-not-great student and white girl who needed financial aid might hinder my prospects during regular admission. (Like some other mid- to upper-tier schools, mine was “need-sensitive,” meaning that admissions might factor a student’s ability to pay during down-to-the-wire acceptance decisions.) Three years later, when I graduated, I was happy to encourage other students to follow in my footsteps.

But by the time my contract was up and I’d helped assemble the next year’s class — not only seeing how the sausage was made, but sticking my hands right there in the meaty mess of it — I was deeply disillusioned about my college, the liberal arts, and, frankly, the entire US education system at large. I saw firsthand how colleges and well-intentioned parents alike can play a crucial role in perpetuating inequity in higher education by prioritizing the acceptance of white, wealthy, and male students to meet their bottom line. The real scourge of higher education isn’t affirmative action, but wealthy families who will pay any price to prioritize their own children and keep their family’s elite status alive.

So whenever another college admissions scandal blows through the news — as it has this week, with the exposure of a massive college admissions scam involving celebrities and CEOs cheating and bribing their way into admissions acceptances for their children — I think about my brief stint as a college admissions counselor and am filled with rage and sadness anew.


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Reply I Worked In College Admissions And Had To Admit A Bunch Of Mediocre Rich Kids (Original post)
demmiblue Wednesday OP
Wellstone ruled Wednesday #1
mitch96 Wednesday #2

Response to demmiblue (Original post)

Wed Mar 13, 2019, 11:46 AM

1. Oh the Days of working your way through School.

I was known as the Dean of Men's personal Driver and Gopher for three years. Hey it paid my freight through School. Same Gopher runs,show the Rich Kids Parents around Campus. Making sure that their Sonny Boy's App's were all processed over at Administration. Oh did I mention,the inbound App's were handled by Students on the Work Program,oh btw,petty cash works in amazing ways.

Nuf said.

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Response to demmiblue (Original post)

Wed Mar 13, 2019, 12:41 PM

2. These actions are not new....

A childhood buddy's uncle was a surgeon. He was from Europe and wanted to move to the US and work here. No problem he just had to take a series of challenge tests to prove he knew his stuff. Back then they were called FLEX-ECFMG tests. Well he thought it was "beneath" him to challenge his knowledge of medicine and surgery.. He was "connected" and paid $10,000 to have a very smart medical student get a false identity and take the tests for him. Passed with flying colors... Cheat much?? As the saying goes, rank has it's privilege.. uffda..

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