The Advantage of Privilege in Admissions

Privilege in Admissions, Privilege in College Admissions, Privileged Elite in Admissions
Every college applicant has some help along the way (photo credit: Padsquad19).

Much of the news coverage over the course of the last several days has focused on the parents, college athletic coaches, college administrators, and the college consultant involved in the bribery and cheating scandal — and rightly so. But we thought we’d focus today’s post on, well, Dr. Dre. As our readers may know, Dr. Dre shared a post on Instagram over the weekend in which he touted his daughter’s admission to USC — which he claimed she got “all on her own.” Dr. Dre, of course, is not only a celebrity but a major donor to Troy having gifted $70 million to the school along with music producer Jimmy Iovine. Unsurprisingly, after facing public backlash, Dr. Dre’s post on Instagram was soon removed.

Being the Child of a Celebrity in Admissions Helps Too

But much of the backlash focused on Dr. Dre’s sizable gift — and his donation to USC is certainly not the only counterpoint to his daughter earning admission “all on her own.” Dr. Dre’s daughter, after all, is also, well, the daughter of Dr. Dre. Elite colleges in our country love to admit the children of the major movers and shakers of our world, the children of the captains of industry. The fact is that Dr. Dre’s daughter had a leg up in the admissions process to USC simply by virtue of being Dr. Dre’s kid. These names add a certain panache to a school; admitting the children of celebrities can lead to great concerts on campus and, heck, even commencement speakers.

No College Applicants Get In All On Their Own

It’s not just Dr. Dre who can’t say that his daughter got in all on her own. We’d argue that no applicant can truly say they got in all on their own. Every single applicant had some help along the way — from an SAT or ACT tutor, from a private college counselor, from an athletic coach, from a school with pull at a given university, from a dad who chose to raise his family in Idaho, and from so many other folks. So let’s just eliminate the “got in all on my own” expression in college admissions. Some students have more help than others but no student — not even your child — got in all on their own.

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