Thursday, September 21, 2006

Legacy Admits

Daniel Hemel of the Harvard Crimson reviews "The Price of Admissions: How America’s Ruling Class Buys Its Way into Elite Colleges—and Who Gets Left Outside the Gates" by Daniel Golden. Hemel, who is not a legacy, defends preferential treatment for alums and the wealthy. An excerpt:

For instance, in 1996, Harvard admitted an applicant named Anne Chandler Bass “in the hope of favors yet to come” from her father, a Yale-educated oil magnate. When Anne Chandler Bass graduated in 2000, her father donated $7 million to Harvard—a gift that now pays the salary of Bass Professor of Government Michael J. Sandel. (The delicious irony—which goes unmentioned by Golden—is that this apparently-unjust admissions break is the source of the funding that facilitates Sandel’s wildly-popular course “Justice.”)