Mar. 20, 2019

College Admissions Scandal

One thing that this college admissions scandal has highlighted for me is that our kids are at a much higher disadvantage.

Paying people to fake college recruitment profiles is so far above the thought process of my students. Many are just trying to figure out how to upload information to the NCAA Clearinghouse in their senior year. No scouts are looking at them and available organized sports are sparse.

Having a test administrator change answers on the SAT/ACT or take the test instead of the student is a foreign concept where I'm from. Our kids have to be taught what the SAT/ACT is and receive last ditch effort test prep in the 9th hour in hopes of getting an average score.

Paying $500,000 to be accepted into a school and then paying the tuition in full is unbelievable when our families can't understand the intricacies of a financial aid award letter. Can't believe that a school would award $40,000 to their child but the cost of attendance is $50,000. Where is the other $10,000 coming from? Every year.

I come from a world of no college savings and little college knowledge. I am a product of such. Many elite institutions will incorporate a student's social economic status within the admissions decision and offer admission based on the applicants ability to pay. In my world hard financial decisions need to be made in order for a child to even leave to attend college. What is financial aid? What is the direct cost? How much financial aid is awarded? Is there need based aid available? Can the student commute to save money? Are there scholarships available? Is there a 10 month payment plan to pay the remaining balance? Questions Questions Questions. And their are people who can pay their way in. Fair?

Is it fair? No. Am I surprised? No. For years the wealthy have been able to pay their way into places that they wish. The wealthier you are the more access you have.

For me and my students we will continue to push forward, learn about the benefits of college and the financial commitment, apply to schools responsibly and hope that their hard work pays off in the long run. In terms of college financing and "pay to play" the system is broken and has been for a very long time.