As the college scandal in colleges and universities across the U.S. unfolds, an unfortunate but indisputable truth is uncoveredー money holds the key to success.
Accusations rolled out from the Justice Department after parents, including famous actors like Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman, were discovered to be involved in the largest college admission scandal in U.S. history. The ensuing investigation that involves the charges of 50 people in six states, has exposed parental schemes to gain admission for their children to some of the most prestigious institutions in the country. From falsifying students’ ethnicities and learning disabilities to paying for inauthentic SAT results and athletic achievements, the parents have manipulated university systems to allow for the admission of their children. Not only has this highlighted the extreme competitive nature of college admissions, but it has also sparked debate about what the appropriate reprimands should be for these actions.
The parents now face legal charges of bribery and money laundering for their “side door” method of admission, and a number of colleges have expelled the students who have been found to be in connection with the falsified credentials. Regardless of whether students were cognizant of the underhanded actions of their parents, schools are tasked with upholding the moral standards of their institutions including admitting only students who meet their requirements.
According to CNN, one of these schools, the University of South Carolina, released that the school plans to use any money received in connection with the alleged scheme to fund scholarships for underprivileged students. This, among other actions are the school’s efforts to right their involvement in admission schemes. While losing a scholarship or even admission to a prestigious school you didn’t have the qualifications for may not be an ideal situation, the real victims of the scandal are the students denied admission because of the spots occupied through unlawful methods.
As a student from a middle-class family, I grew up knowing that unless I received a substantial scholarship to a university, college would be pretty much off the table. All throughout high school I did everything I could to ensure that my grades, test scores and class standing were enough to get me where I wanted to go in life. I am so thankful for the incredible opportunities that I have been fortunate enough to have, but I know that a good degree and future career is much more than a luck of the draw or a large sum of money. Unfortunately, that is something that the students whose parents pay and cheat their children’s way into college will never know.