A Letter from the Editors: A Need for Higher Education Reformation

Phoebe Lai and Jamie Doo, Editors-In-Chief

In light of the recent college scandal involving wealthy parents paying large sums for their children’s admission into “elite” schools, educators, parents, and high schoolers are left with wavering opinions about the deserved repercussions of such crimes.

While the newly exposed corruption within the admissions system is widely condemned, responses have not been black-and-white, some claiming that the students were not at fault for their parents’ decision and others claiming that expulsion is an appropriate consequence.

The severe public response has put immense pressure on involved colleges to lay the law to associated parties, but the final decision to penalize individual students remains under the advisory of the colleges themselves. The “big picture” begs the question of whether the freshly discovered (though suspected) offenses will have an effect on future admissions.

Already, universities have made it apparent that these crimes will not be taken lightly, as they have begun to reject similar fraudulent instances in admission and are looking at each misconduct case-by-case. The serious face that these colleges have put on has delivered the message that they plan to put an end to this corruption.

However, the amount of people who were wrongfully admitted into these colleges does not necessarily open an abundance of spaces for other deserving students. William Rick Singer, the “ringleader” of the unlawful operation, claimed to have assisted more than 750 families, an unsettling number when considering the embezzlement, yet a relatively small amount in the grand scheme of college admissions over several years.

While it is important to focus on the deceit at hand, it’s clear that there must be a massive overhaul of the university system for good.

The problem is that parents and students have started to see higher education as a luxury brand that can be bought into, rather than an opportunity for students to find careers that satisfy them into adulthood.

And yes, even though it may be painful for the parents who were exposed in this scheme, they must be apprehended and charged with the crime when convicted.

To discourage this behavior, the students who have entered these universities should be suspended. Clearly they have not entered the school under their own merits, whether academically or athletically. It makes no sense to reward their behavior.

U.S college culture must be changed. As every American student strives for a position in these top universities, these schools must be aware that they are under the radar. Wealth must not be the main factor that brings acceptance letters to prospective undergraduates.