An anonymous classmate of mine posted this message to the class listerv and gave his or her permission to post at BloggEd. I thought it was pretty interesting. Give it a read and let me know your thoughts.—Ben
“My son sent me this link. It’s a Fox sports interviewer at the Harvard-Yale game. He thinks the game is boring so he interviews the spectators instead and comes up with a pretty funny collection of geeks, nerds, grade-grubbers and losers. It made me laugh out loud.
I mentioned one of the bragging kids in the video to my husband and said, “Guess what his high school activities were?” and my husband sight unseen guessed correctly:
–athlete in a non-team sport, probably went to state level
–president of student council
–went to Guatemala to build houses
Nothing wrong with any of that, but honestly– boring!
What about a kid who takes the summer off to get a real, paying job or do anything not organized by adults? The kid who doesn’t buy into high school activities because he has his own passionate interests which may not come with an imprimatur from adults? I think that the way the Ivy League is organized now, these kids can’t get in; the over-subscribed, over-supervised ones do. (Although the admitted candidates are energetic, disciplined, bound to be successful, I admit.)
Last night I had dinner with some friends and one, class of ’73, argued that Yale is now creating “a generation of number twos” who get in because they “follow the rules all their lives.” He compared them to the students of imperial China, where for hundreds of years, much of the creative energy of the country’s brightest people went into passing tests. And China stagnated.”