Details behind Princeton’s legacy admissions

SocratesPost is always on the frontlines scouring the news for relevant updates in the college admissions landscape. We look for anything that can help shape our understanding of the latest trends in admissions and help our readers see the direction in which we’re moving.

Questions we explored this week:

  • Are California public universities picking up affirmative action again?
  • A Princeton student dug this up: What's the truth behind legacy admissions at the New Jersey Ivy?
  • Want to live on campus? Sorry. This East Coast college is cutting 1,800 on-campus housing spots.

June 22, 2020 — Possibly

With Proposition 209, California banned affirmative action in 1996. Affirmative action gives admissions preference to underrepresented minorities like Blacks, American Indians, and Hispanics. Before Californians can vote on it this November, the State Senate will have to approve legislation to reverse the ban. If university demographics mirrored that of the wider Californian population, the percentage of Latinos would rise from 25% to 39% and Blacks from 4% to 6.5%.

What does this mean? The return of affirmative action plus the elimination standardized test scores will give lower income students a shot at university admission. Asian American applicants, however, may be disadvantaged as they are an overrepresented minority that — while not always — oftentimes falls in higher income groups.

Picked for you:  UC schools to make room for more resident students

Read more here.

June 23, 2020 — The more generous the better

Not all legacies applicants are treated equally, according to a series of interviews with former Princeton admissions staff conducted by a Princeton student. Legacies — an applicant whose parent or stepparent earned a Princeton degree — whose parents contributed more time or money to the university are prioritized. The legacy admissions rate is about four times that of the regular applicant pool.

What does this mean? Ivy League schools like Princeton have historically been reputed to be elitist, exclusive insider clubs. Giving preference to (rich) legacy applicants keeps it exclusive. While they do make increasing efforts to recruit non-white and non-wealthy candidates, legacy admissions still continues.

Read more here.

June 26, 2020 — University of Rhode Island

Thanks (or no thanks) to Covid, the public research university in Kingston with a 15k undergrad population will only offer on-campus housing to those with priority status. This includes those with special needs and unique circumstances like living out-of-state that make it impossible to commute to class. Otherwise, students are encouraged to find off-campus housing. Students on campus must buy a meal plan.

Picked for you:  FAFSA to eliminate questions and remove EFC

What does this mean? Local apartment providers will have a surge in customers this fall. Moving students off campus won’t hinder the traditional college experience — partying with new friends, meeting new roommates, and studying with classmates — which can easily be considered more accessible off than on campus.

Read more here.

Hi there.

No one spotlights the human stories of college admissions like we do.

But we're independent journalists who need support from readers like you.

Your subscription keeps us going -- completely ad-free.

Already a subscriber? Log in