Admissions scandal exposes true cost of college

As seniors move forward from the final releases of college decisions, all attention returns to the college scandal that intrigues us all.

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Admissions scandal exposes true cost of college

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College admissions has never seen a scandal quite like this.

In early March, 50 parents were accused of cheating their children into college by falsely increasing SAT and ACT scores and bribing coaches to accept non-athlete students as sports superstars.

Two famous actresses and their children are at the forefront of this scandal. Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman are just a few of the parents who paid extensive amounts of money to get their children into elite colleges.

The actions these women took is now not only affecting their own careers – Lori Loughlin lost her contract with the Hallmark Channel- but it is also affecting their children, who did not know of their parents cheating. Olivia Jade, Lori Loughlin’s daughter and internet star, has lost sponsorships and partnerships with companies like Sephora.

Olivia has publicly shamed her mother for forcing her to go to college when she would have chosen to forgo higher education and instead focus on her career. According to multiple media outlets, Olivia Jade feels her parents “ruined” her life.

But these parents did not cheat on their own. They had help.

If I can make the comparison, there is a front door of getting in, where a student just does it on their own. And then there’s a back door, where people go to institutional advancement and make large donations, but they’re not guaranteed in. And then I created a side door that guaranteed families to get in.”

— William Singer

One man, William Rick Singer, ran the scheme. After being paid thousands, and even millions, of dollars, Singer bribed college coaches and changed students’ standardized test answers to ensure they got into elite schools. In total, Singer made $25 million through this ploy.

The list of involved schools is long, including University of Southern California, Georgetown, and Yale. Many of these schools have already fired coaches and admissions directors who participated in the scandal. Yale has even expelled their involved student. Other students have chosen to drop out of the schools into which they fraudulently got accepted.

The parents, coaches, admissions directors, and Singer now face charges of racketeering, as the National Education Department announced an investigation into eight schools involved in the scandal.  

One thing is clear: the students involved in this scandal got into elite schools due to their high status and rich parents, not their merit. This scandal has led to a re-evaluation of wealth and privilege, especially in the college admissions process.

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