Highlights from Higher Ed: Taking Sides and the Future of the Personal Essay

RJ Nichol
Oct 27, 2017

1. Taking sides

Which “side” is right when it comes to the role that race should play in admissions decisions? Neither, says OiYan Poon, an assistant professor of higher education leadership at Colorado State University. “I chastise all parties. The debate on all sides of the issue is ill-informed.” Hear more from Poon in this recent Asia Times article.

2. Looping college counselors in

Several colleges are now working directly with counselors in an effort to increasing their application numbers. Could this new shift be a game changer for colleges that are struggling to meet their enrollment goals?

3. Is the personal essay getting too impersonal?

Students are hiring consultants to help write their college essays, leaving admissions officers faced with a unique dilemma: If the purpose of the essay is to get to know the student, but students aren’t writing the essay on their own, who are these admissions counselors actually getting to know? Inside Higher Ed has one perspective.

4. Ban the box

Students in Maryland have had enough of criminal history’s influence on admissions decisions. Many feel that requiring prospective students to check a box if they have such a history discriminates against lower income, first generation college applicants. Their solution: Ban the box!    

Recommended Reading

First-Generation Students: Understanding and Improving the Experience from Recruitment to Commencement
First generation college students are inspired and motivated to make a difference. They have often overcome seemingly insurmountable obstacles to become the first in their families to pursue higher education. This title makes the case that understanding their backgrounds and tailoring the recruitment and application process to this group can help promote equity of access.

RJ Nichol

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