Two weeks ago, America witnessed the U.S. Department of Justice uncover a scandal that has infuriated many students, parents and colleges.
Federal officials reported 50 people were involved in standardized test grade manipulation and bribing school officials to let students gain admission into high standard schools such as Yale.
This should anger every college student that has been through or is experiencing the college process the normal way. The four long years of AP classes and extra credit work. The part-time job worked to pay off car bills and future college bills. Then there are the hours spent traveling and researching to find the best suited college, with the looming cost of each weighing in mind.
Those financially privileged students didn’t have to go through all of that. Their parents metaphorically waved their moneybags, doing all the work that should be standard for prospective college students.
The kids of these parents are not at fault. They were just taking advantage of their situation. Our anger should be directed toward the adults involved in the scandal.
While they may have had the best intentions in mind for their kids, their actions could have a ripple effect. The scandal calls into question the validity and worth of standardized testing. If test administrators are easily swayed by bribes, then who knows how many times SATs and ACTs have been swayed?
College admission counselors could have their priorities more focused on possible income rather than if a student works hard and is responsible. This hurts their generally already tainted reputation. Just a few years ago, athletics had a scandal where some coaches bribed athletes to come play for them. High prestige colleges that were involved, such as Yale and UCLA, could be subject to questioning their real motive: providing a sound education or making money.
Overall, these possible ripple’s have one unifying effect: Because these wealthy parents’ son or daughter got into their desired prestigious school, they could have eliminated a student who worked and went through the proper steps to gain the same letter of acceptance.
While only high profile scandals like this are showcased by the media, they are still possible in schools as small as Waynesburg University. Waynesburg hasn’t had such controversies happen. That is not to say, however, it never will.
While Waynesburg University’s executive staff and other faculty have done their best to give their students the best education for the best price possible, they still need to be held accountable for their actions. Everyone is human, and eventually they will make a mistake. It is the job of media outlets such as The Yellow Jacket and students to make sure, when those mistakes happen, those responsible are called out, and dealt with accordingly by authorities.
Hopefully, scandals will never come to this university. If students and those in positions to speak out hold them accountable, maybe they never will.