I thought this was an interesting, positive, and potentially long reaching way of viewing admissions.
“The 'Best and Brightest' Aren’t Always Obvious”
“I was born in Ponce, Puerto Rico, to parents whose aspiration of overcoming poverty and giving their children a better opportunity led them to New York. Our version of the American dream began in the projects of the South Bronx during one of the most dangerous times in the borough’s history. Violence, drugs, poverty, and pollution were everywhere.”
“One of my most vivid childhood recollections was watching my mother cry as she sat at our kitchen table. She had no idea where she was going to find a dollar to buy milk the next day. That was the moment I realized something was different about my family, and as I grew older I learned we were poor. My first few years in New York, I slept on a cot in the hallway where I heard rats rummaging through the walls each night.”
“A high-school counselor and an admission officer saved my life. Midway through my high-school career, a guidance counselor who thought I had potential made sure I went to college presentations in the area, met with admission officers who visited, and even paid for me to visit some colleges. My life changed the day an admission officer came to speak with me about her school. The way she brought college to life and painted a picture of all that was possible changed my aspirations. Most important, she and her team took a huge chance on me.”
“I now serve as a leader at a similar institution of higher education. Every day, my life experiences inform my work, and I think about how to help young people who share a similar story to mine. As the years go by, however, I grow increasingly concerned. We seem to care more about the numbers we report to our boards, the government, and U.S. News than we do about individual students applying. Admitting kids that share my story is riskier these days. Take too many and your average GPA or SAT scores decrease. There goes your board report and U.S. News ranking. Admit students who don’t have the best stats and you might damage your yield and retention numbers. There goes your Moody’s bond rating.”
Read it all here: http://chronicle.com/article/The-BestBrightest/147795/?cid=at&utm_source=at&utm_medium=en
What can we be doing for those who start at a disadvantage? Do we look at them just as a number, or do we take real chances and help them succeed?
Dr Flavius A B Akerele III