The Northwestern admissions staff got into some trouble recently when it was discovered that admissions officers were flagging angry comments by parents of applicants as well as by high school guidance counselors in their admissions database. Apparently, according to Scott Jaschik of “Inside Higher Ed” in his piece entitled “Mocking Angry Parents,” “In the Northwestern database, the new categories for ‘Angry Calls from Counselors and Parents’ include: ‘%$^& You,’ ‘I know Pat Ryan’ (a trustee and major donor), ‘You’ll never get another applicant from my school,’ and ‘Shove it.'” Kind of funny, no?
Michael E. Mills, Northwestern’s associate provost for enrollment, is the person at Northwestern credited with creating this classification system to distinguish whether or not applicants have angry parents. But apparently there was a mole. Was Edward Snowden working in Northwestern’s admissions office? Probably not but maybe he had a friend there? Because someone at Northwestern sent screen grabs of the angry parent classification system in the database to a number of folks including…wait for it…angry parents of rejected applicants. The angry parents of the rejected applicant then sent the screen grabs both to “Inside Higher Ed” and, of course, “College Confidential.”
Northwestern has since apologized for the classification system and, presumably, they’ll never use it again. They’d be foolish to do so! If any of this strikes you as familiar, it’s because in the Tina Fey-starring movie “Admission,” there was a white board on which admissions officers recorded the angry comments of parents. It seems Northwestern just did the same thing digitally. Funny, right?
While you’re here, check out this post on Northwestern University Basketball.