Monday, September 13, 2004

Affirmative Action For Stupid Rich Kids


The Times brings us a moment in Yale history from the turbulent 60's, when legacy enrollment of the incoming freshman class was slightly reduced - to 12%:
The reaction of the alumni was swift and furious. By the end of 1966, the alumni were in open revolt, and Yale's alumni board hastily formed a special committee to investigate the matter. In 1967, William F. Buckley, an alumnus then running an insurgent campaign for a seat on the Yale Corporation, declared that Yale had ceased to be the "kind of place where your family goes for generations" and had been transformed into an institution where "the son of an alumnus, who goes to a private preparatory school, now has less chance of getting in than some boy from P.S. 109 somewhere."
The alumni backlash was apparently enough to scare Harvard and Princeton away from trying a similar experiment - and the author notes, "Recently, both Harvard and Princeton have admitted legacy applicants at a rate more than triple that of non-legacy applicants.".

2 comments:

  1. It's nice to know that my tax dollars are supporting legacy admissions policy. After all, rich people need government help. I'm reminded of the article, "Confessions of a Welfare Queen." http://reason.com/0403/fe.js.confessions.shtml

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  2. I suspect that Bush's "now that I've benefitted I think legacies are wrong" comment got the righties angrier at him than anything else he's ever said or done.

    I can count on on hand the number of people I've spoken to who were against both race-based affirmative action AND legacies.

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