The college admission system is broken. Celebrities like Lori Laughlin brought the validity of college admissions into question. Rich celebrities and parents proved this when they were able to use William Singer’s services to grease the palms of dozens of people involved in the admissions process. Test scores were changed, non-athletes were disguised as athletes, and many, many people were bribed. All this only shows us that the system itself is undoubtedly unfair for many who try to apply to colleges in the U.S.
For students who come from low-income and middle-income families, the college process can be extremely challenging and stressful. According to the Association for Education Finance and Policy , students from lower income families sometimes undermatch into colleges less selective than are warranted by their academic record. This is due to the little that colleges do in order to standardize the admissions process, making it harder to avoid harmful trends.
Typically the admissions process between different schools vary. One school could have application deadlines earlier or later than others. Some schools even require students to come in for interviews while others simply require applications through The Common Application. Schools that do not accept The Common Application, have an entirely separate application with a fee, which can make it even more challenging for low income families to apply.
Many of the schools that students apply to these days still require SAT or ACT scores, which have been shown in multiple studies to be racially biased against non-white students. According to a study done by the Princeton Review , these exams test for skills that are more likely to be found in white students rather than black or Latino students. It even showed that black students scored lower on the verbal section of the SAT than white students because it tested vocabulary words that were more likely to be taught to white students.
With the college admissions process being focused on testing that is more supportive to those who are white, it can be argued that this process is without a doubt, broken. Not only is it selective towards those who are white, but it can also be easily manipulated by the upper class. In light of the recent scandal orchestrated by William Singer, this is even more prevalent.