"Confessions of an Application Reader"
August 05, 2013
Sad. Very sad.
A HIGHLY qualified student, with a 3.95 unweighted grade point average and 2300 on the SAT, was not among the top-ranked engineering applicants to the University of California, Berkeley. He had perfect 800s on his subject tests in math and chemistry, a score of 5 on five Advanced Placement exams, musical talent and, in one of two personal statements, had written a loving tribute to his parents, who had emigrated from India.
I'd like to see evidence that all the expensive machinations of the admissions offices of selective universities yield any--whether measured in terms of academic performance or lifetime achievement or happiness or any other criterion--net benefit. The main purpose, as I see it, is to let the admissions people try to play God. If they work for a private institution, we must, I suppose, tolerate it. But when they work for a taxpayer-supported university like Berkeley, voters should stop it.