It's hardly breaking news, but more and more people are questioning the race to the Ivy League that in some cases begins as early as preschool. And in addition to perpetuating the increasingly-rigid class structure in the US, the Ivy League colleges are inadvertently creating and admitting students who have no idea how to really take advantage of the resources available to them. So writes William Deresiewicz in his article, "Don't Send Your Kid to the Ivy League
" from the New Republic:
So extreme are the admission standards now that kids who manage to get into elite colleges have, by definition, never experienced anything but success. The prospect of not being successful terrifies them, disorients them. The cost of falling short, even temporarily, becomes not merely practical, but existential. The result is a violent aversion to risk. You have no margin for error, so you avoid the possibility that you will ever make an error. Once, a student at Pomona told me that she’d love to have a chance to think about the things she’s studying, only she doesn’t have the time. I asked her if she had ever considered not trying to get an A in every class. She looked at me as if I had made an indecent suggestion.
See also Deresiewicz's earlier article, "The Disadvantages of an Elite Education"
from American Scholar, previously discussed on the blue
posted by math
on Jul 23, 2014 -
- "Elite education may impoverish and indebt young women and do little to get them a job, but at least it makes their eggs valuable."
Reproductive Medical Associates of New York, a fertility clinic associated with Mount Sinai Hospital, maintains separate websites for egg donors and egg buyers. The home page of the donors’ site features a large stock photograph of a young woman holding schoolbooks. Behind crossed arms the pretty brunette model is clutching what looks like but is not a copy of Lauren Berlant’s Cruel Optimism, along with a white three-ring binder. She wears a zippered velor jacket in the same shade of blue as the graphic that emerges from behind her head in an oversize font: Become an Egg Donor [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Apr 8, 2014 -
"Posing For Posture"
"Posture photos," as they were then called, were taken of every incoming student at many prestigious colleges in the first half of the 20th century, as a part of the registration process. George L. Hersey '51, now a professor of art history at Yale, says, "I was told to show up at the swimming pool, I took my swim test and posed. We were expected to show up and do this." Students acquiesced in the days of single-sex colleges because nudity was a normal part of the college experience, Knight says. "We never wore bathing suits in the swimming pools, it was considered more hygienic that way," he says. "The House [swimming] races were in the nude." And so posture photos were snapped and collected--and saved for later research which was intended to link physique to temperament. This practice--led nationwide by a Harvard researcher--remained widespread through the 1950s and 60s. [more inside]
posted by the man of twists and turns
on Jul 7, 2013 -
"No one guessed the truth, which was simpler, and therefore stranger, than their wildest theories: that the scared young woman so hotly pursued by South Carolina police, the Secret Service, federal marshals and even the U.S. Army was actually on a bizarre and misguided journey of self-discovery." Rolling Stone reports on the strange case of Esther Reed: The Girl Who Conned The Ivy League
. (via Metachat)
posted by The Whelk
on Jan 17, 2010 -
ONE AFTERNOON IN THE LATE 1970's, deep in the labyrinthine interior of a massive Gothic tower in New Haven, an unsuspecting employee of Yale University opened a long-locked room in the Payne Whitney Gymnasium and stumbled upon something shocking and disturbing.
Shocking, because what he found was an enormous cache of nude photographs, thousands and thousands of photographs of young men in front, side and rear poses. Disturbing, because on closer inspection the photos looked like the record of a bizarre body-piercing ritual: sticking out from the spine of each and every body was a row of sharp metal pins. The case of the Ivy League posture photos
posted by alphanerd
on Jul 13, 2004 -
The Ivy League pop stars!
Gossipy article reveals how universities throughout the USA are frantically fighting each other in order to attract celebrity professors. Niall Ferguson
, Deirdre (born Donald
) McCloskey and Saul Bellow ("teaching load: one course a year") are some examples. Considering these people are already engaged in their own love affair with the public eye (book tours, book deals, media events
etc), are they the best choice from the academic point of view? Do traditional universities really have to resort to namedropping
? And just between us, anybody out there ever had or currently has classes with bigwigs that turned out to be really fascinating or really disappointing?
first link via those elitists from aldaily
posted by 111
on Jul 14, 2003 -
The Ivy League (as well as other U.S. universities, typically with bad football teams) have a notorious tradition of marching bands that don't march. Columbia's band
recently got in hot water
(again) for a swipe at the Catholic church during a Fordham game. Did you play in the marching band at your college? More importantly, did you play a real instrument? Me, I blew bubbles and played the squeegee mop at Columbia.
posted by mkultra
on Oct 7, 2002 -