College Admissions Scam

posted 3 months ago in The Lounge
Post # 61
Member
685 posts
Busy bee

chocolateplease :  jannigirl : 

It’s commendable that you did what you did, but you actually owe yourselves more credit, because the published data are clear on larger trends. You are the exceptions rather than the rule. 

Post # 62
Member
2412 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

techmom :  of course it takes hard work. That’s what its all about. Life shouldn’t be easy. But it wasn’t super hard or unmanageable. Show up to class. Work a job when you’re not at school or studying. That’s actually pretty simple. Defer the fun for a few years. 

If people aren’t willing to work or sacrifice, that’s on them. It wasn’t even that much work or much of a sacrifice. Self-limiting and calculated for later rewards. 

I have student loans. Those from a poorer background won’t even have that because of grants and scholarships based on need.

Post # 63
Member
348 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

natasha0b :  I think you need to read and article about this situation and not just assume you know the story based on the headlines.

Post # 64
Member
4425 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

Windborn :  I find this story both fascinating, shocking, yet not shocking at the same time. I’m a teacher, so I watch first hand the privilege and opportunity handed to certain kids while others bust their asses and receive very little. So, in that sense, not shocked (…but pissed as always because it’s such a rigged system). Shocked that it goes beyond the typical “influence” (donations, throwing name/job title/connections around) to actual fraud. 

I mean, these people e-mailed (E-MAILED) one another. After doing all this and spending that much money, they were too stupid to know not to leave a paper trail. 

I don’t get Lori Loughlin and her husband’s push on this anyway-it seems like both her daughters didn’t even want to go to college. That’s frustrating, too. They don’t want to go now? Fine. Let them make their own choices. But, don’t impact others’ abilities to go to their dream school for your kids who don’t even want it. 

Post # 65
Member
1036 posts
Bumble bee

I think this particular situation is scandal-worthy and has appropriate negative distain from the general public. The Lori children are particularly lazy and have poor attitudes. The things they did were illegal and dishonest, and it led to unappreciative and unworthy candidates joining the university.

In my experience of legacy families, hard work, economic excellence and high achievements are pushed on children to the extreme. There is no “lazy legacy” child. More money = more piano lessons, sports teams, special tutors, etc on and on and on to push a child to meet the same level of achievement as the family. Families are frantic to make sure that their children meet their expectations. There is no relaxed, “I don’t care about school” attitude. It can be confining and miserable. Expectations are high and miserable. Life is competitive from Kintergarten, and it doesn’t stop. Sometimes ever.

I have no problem whatsoever with families as alumni donating funds to support universities and holding the expectation or hope that their children will have a place there. They are helping to support the entire university system with their donations and support, so why not?  I have no problem with legacy families potentially gaining preference in admission — because typically they are invited to attend the university along with, not instead of, other potential scholars.  

I do have a problem with what happened in this case.

Post # 66
Member
40 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: July 2020

Can I ask a potentially very stupid question? If elite US universities will accept underachieving students because those students come with large donations/some other benefits, how do they maintain their elite status? If it because sufficient of the students are not underachieving and balance out those that are? I don’t understand, because it seems that taking students who are not up to par will eventually discredit the university itself as an elite institution, thereby reducing its appeal to those students who can make large donations in the first place?

Post # 67
Member
2412 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

flybynight2020 :  one would assume that, hopefully, getting in was the easy part. They still need to pass the classes. Though, of course, they might also be “given” grades as part of this whole nepotism/legacy deal. 

Post # 68
Member
201 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2021 - City, State

As a person with a disability, I am afraid that this will mean it will be harder for people to get accomodations with standardized testing. It was already hard enough to get them when I tried to get them for my ACT test. I know when it comes to college, you can get in serious trouble if you are caught cheating by abusing your accommodations like accessing the internet on your computer that you need to type stuff out on and there has been people that have gotten in serious trouble for doing stuff like that and it makes it harder on other good, honest people who legitimately need those accommodations.

Post # 69
Member
750 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: City, State

flybynight2020 :   Usually, influence works to make an attractive student even more attractive. 

Influence might mean admitting a straight A student who is otherwise unremarkable. Or a straight A student from a slightly less academically rigorous high school. All of the schools mentioned receive more applications from straight A/ top 5% test score students than they have seats.  We’re not usually talking about accepting clowns.  This scandal received so much press because the kids are so ill-suited to their positions at these schools. 

The kids who get into a school (in part) because they have exceptionally wealthy parents are also kids who attended the best preparatory programs, had nannies with early childhood education degrees, received exceptional music and sports training, casually associate with exceptionally successful people, travel the world extensively and speak several languages. They have access to letters of recommendations and internships with industry, artistic, political, and military titans.  There are more stamps on their passport than most adults have. Even if the kid isn’t self-motivated or gifted, they’ll have passively acquired more social and intellectual capital than very motivated children from more modest upbringings.  They may lack character or charm, but they are still elite students.

Part of what makes these kids at the center of this scandal so odd is that their parents were able to bribe the side door with relatively small amounts of money and with such blatant lies. 

Post # 70
Member
179 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

Tatum :  The funniest part of this whole scandal to me is that on season 1 of Shameless, William H. Macy’s genius son was running a scam where he took the SATs for other kids to get them fantastic scores lol. Makes you wonder where he got the idea …. 

Post # 71
Member
4425 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2013

flybynight2020 :  I think, honestly, the elite part mainly stems from tradition and tuition. These schools are private and/or extremely expensive because they always have been. There’s this great article then turned into a book by a former Yale professor (let go after writing the article, I believe) called Excellent Sheep: The Miseducation of America’s Elite that talks about the farce of elite colleges when it comes to educations, tuition, etc. Basically, that elite is merely in those two Ts: tradition and tuition. 

Post # 72
Member
1667 posts
Bumble bee

flybynight2020 :  Because the kids who outright buy their way make up a relatively small percentage of the population. The legal front door way to buy your way in (“developmental admits”) is EXPENSIVE. It’s expensive to buy a building. Most kids at these schools are not “my parents can buy a building” rich. 

A lot are privileged, yes, but more of the upper middle class privilege- they got excellent K-12 educations (that do, fundamentally, put them ahead of their less advantaged peers academically) because their engineer/lawyer/doctor parents managed to buy a house in a good school district, they have been taking piano/tennis/singing/soccer/etc. lessons since they were a kid and their parents could always afford the cost of the particpation fee, and they grew up in an environment in which everyone expects you to go to college and it’s not “uncool” to care about and do well in school.

The advantage of these schools is from recruiting, the value of the name brand, and the network.  A lot of the employers who pay their straight out of college employees $$$ like Goldman Sachs only recruit from top schools. As kids funnel into these careers, they then later in life find that actually that dude you hung out with down the hall your freshman year is now a partner at a prominent VC fund and hey, you’ve got a start-up with a pitch. 

Post # 73
Member
348 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

chocolateplease :  Yes. The  system is flawed. I had zero help from my family and yet, I had to use their income when file for financial aid until I turned (26?) By the beginning of my junior year, I had maxed out on finacial aid. By the end of my junior year, I was failing because I was working 50-60 hours a week trying to pay for school.

Post # 74
Member
417 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

I think the importance of attending one of these elite colleges is vastly overblown. 

Post # 75
Member
8952 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

ariesscientist :  You are sort of describing the system here in Australia.  We have a government loan (help formerly hecs) system where you don’t even have to pay back your loan until you reach xy level of income (I think it is $42k). The government also sets the amont that that a university can charge per year for a course (different amounts for different courses on the a three tier system. Medicine is in teir 3 and the current total cost per year that a university can charge is $8,859.00). Unversity enterance is done by a centralised agency in each state and using a common scoring system (enter score) which takes into account your grades etc and extenuating circumstances like hardship, disability and illness. So no matter your socio-economic status you can get into university without fear that you are going to get bumped by a celebrities kid. Our governments put lots of money into our education system in order to make it accessible to all. You can even get payments off the government to support you while studying that never has to be repaid.

We also don’t run our universities as elite sport recruiting centres. There are very few professional level sporting teams at our universities. We do have one government run sports university (AIS) where elite althletes attend but people like football players go straight into playing professional football from high school and are supported by their team to further their education at university or tafe. But they have to apply like everyone else. (Also should not that most high schools also do not run sports programs like in the USA. Most Sports teams are community based organisations that are not part of schools).

Now there is still inequality between primary/high schools in good neighbourhoods vs bad but they are all funded the same unless they are a religious or private school who are funded differently than public schools. It is just that schools in lower socio-economic, rural or remote communities may have more complex needs that need to be met and whilst there is funding for this it just simply isn’t enough.

There are scholarships to be had as well so exceptional students can have zero help debts after university. There is also the fee capping and financial supports for post grad students.

Now rich people who want their underperforming kid to be a doctor like them still have the option. Universities offer full fee paying places where if you can afford the fees (for medicine it can be upwards of $180k for a degree) and we also offer full fee paying courses for international students. We charge these two more to help subsidise the government system. 

Also want to point out that we also don’t require students to complete a useless degree in order to get into a specialty degree. If you want to study medicine you finish high school and start a bachelor of medicine. You want to be a lawyer you finish high school and start a bachelor of law. 

My cousins daughter is currently living with us. She has just gotten into university at the age of 19. She is from a remote aboriginal community that has one school with three teachers for all students from grade prep to year 12 and completed most of her senior education via school of the air with limited internet availability. Her family doesn’t own a computer or iphones/ipads. The only doctor is the flying doctor services which visits once per week. But she still is able to attend one of the best universities in our country to study medicine. And she isn’t an anomoly. Thousands of students from across Australia every year get to go to university that wouldn’t in the USA because of our system. 

I believe a similar system is in place in New Zealand as well.

It can be done. You just have to have a society thst believes education is a right not a priviledge and that education should be accessible and not bankrupt people before they even start their careers.

Leave a comment


Find Amazing Vendors