Saturday, June 20, 2009

Political pressure in Illinois college admissions

At the University of Illinois, politically connected applicants sometimes gained admission over the protests of admissions staff. Here are some stories (the first from, reporting on the second two from the Chicago Trib, and the last two on the fallout):
Blago-Style Admissions
Clout goes to college
U. of I. admissions: How politicians pressured university to admit students
Governor Appoints Panel to Investigate U. of Illinois Admissions
Federal Investigators Subpoena Admissions Records at 3 Illinois Universities

College admissions is serious stuff in Illinois. (Or, to put it another way, state politics includes everything.)

Update: the Chicago Trib has kept following the story, and now has quite a collection of articles: Clout goes to college.
Further update (7/13/09) from the Chronicle: Backlash Over U. of Illinois 'Clout' Scandal Spreads to Trustees and News Media
(8/3/09): The chairman of the Board of Trustees at the University of Illinois resigned on Monday amid increasingly incendiary accusations that he encouraged an academic version of “pay to play” politics to flourish, allowing students to be admitted based largely on personal and political connections.

1 comment:

CEP said...

Without denying the "political pressure" problem in admissions at the U of I (since I live about a mile from campus and have a kid going there), what bothers me most about this series of articles is the complete absence of any consideration of other "admission pressure" programs -- in particular for athletes in revenue sports. But then, as an undergraduate I went to a Division III school that was nonetheless competitive...