The NYTimes had an article yesterday about Indian college students attending American schools. But something about this just doesn’t sound right:
NEW DELHI — Moulshri Mohan was an excellent student at one of the top private high schools in New Delhi. When she applied to colleges, she received scholarship offers of $20,000 from Dartmouth and $15,000 from Smith. Her pile of acceptance letters would have made any ambitious teenager smile: Cornell, Bryn Mawr, Duke, Wesleyan, Barnard and the University of Virginia.
But because of her 93.5 percent cumulative score on her final high school examinations, which are the sole criteria for admission to most colleges here, Ms. Mohan was rejected by the top colleges at Delhi University, better known as D.U., her family’s first choice and one of India’s top schools.
“The problem is clear,” said Kapil Sibal, the government minister overseeing education in India, who studied law at Harvard. “There is a demand and supply issue. You don’t have enough quality institutions, and there are enough quality young people who want to go to only quality institutions.”
American universities and colleges have been more than happy to pick up the slack. Faced with shrinking returns from endowment funds, a decline in the number of high school graduates in the United States and growing economic hardship among American families, they have stepped up their efforts to woo Indian students thousands of miles away.
Representatives from many of the Ivy League institutions have begun making trips to India to recruit students and explore partnerships with Indian schools. Some have set up offices in India, partly aimed at attracting a wider base of students. The State Department held a United States-India higher education summit meeting on Thursday at Georgetown University to promote the partnership between the countries.
Ok, let me see if I’ve got this right. American universities are seeing a decline in the number of American high school graduates and an increase in the number of students seeking financial aid. But every year, the exclusive top tier universities take great delight crushing the hopes and dreams of the best high school students America has to offer. In fact, some schools think it’s a mark of distinction to turn down so many overqualified students each year.
BUT, then they go ahead an offer quite substantial scholarships to Indian students. And let’s be clear about this, there is no shortage of foreign students, especially Asian students at quality American universities. In the hard sciences, they are the dominant demographic. The problem is in India where the number of qualified students exceeds the number of top ranked university slots so we offer them our limited seats because… ??
So, overqualified but poor American students will be rejected and similarly qualified Indian students will be lavished with money. Don’t get me wrong, I’m glad we are still good enough to attract a foreign clientele even if we are their “safe schools”. But this is a real slap in the face to thousands of American high school students who can’t get a foot in the door and who routinely burn themselves out only to receive rejection letters. Then there are the mountains of student loans they have to take out just to get through the second tier colleges who admit them.
This is why occupywallstreet is attracting so many people to its movement. Education is extremely expensive and now we have to compete with Indians for the few slots and scholarships in our own country, as if the high school product here, which has generated many Nobel prizes over the last century, is somehow not quite good enough anymore.
Atrios says that the Galtian overlords don’t know what’s best for them:
Sure their lawyers and accountants and lobbyists might have a pretty good idea what some specific provision might mean for them, but there’s no reason to think that they really understand how to run the macroeconomy for their benefit. I think a lot of the mess in the housing/mortgage markets post-bubble was due to the fact that the securitization contracts were poorly done, giving mortgage servicers very bad incentives, but I also think a lot of the mess was because the banskters didn’t really know what was good for them, or at least their companies. It’s hard to imagine that large scale principal modification with some sweeteners from the government, along with bankruptcy cramdown, wouldn’t have actually been better for both the macroeconomy and the banks.
This is true of the pharmaceutical industry, which for the past 15-20 years has been run by a bunch of MBAs who do not understand the business they run. They’ve made a business out of merging companies to the detriment of their research pipelines. It’s almost like they have a complete disconnect between the money they play with and the actual source of that money. It’s all catching up with them now with the patent cliff looming. You’d think that some political types would want to fix this problem but apparently not. It’s just a simple case of companies acting like adolescents with very permissive parents. Someday, they’re going to end up in rehab.
Krugman says he thought occupywallstreet was imminent back in 2008:
…Occupy Wall Street site today, reminds me of the closing passage in my introduction to The Great Unraveling:
I have a vision – maybe just a hope—of a great revulsion: a moment when the American people look at what is happening, realize how their good will and patriotism have been abused, and put a stop to this drive to destroy much of what is best in our country. How and when this moment will come, I don’t know. But one thing is clear: it cannot happen unless we all make an effort to see and report the truth about what is happening.
It *was* imminent, Paul. There were those of us who saw the manipulation of the Democratic primary process in 2008 as a deeply disturbing harbinger of things to come. We were alarmed more than heartbroken that our candidate didn’t win. We thought that the foundations of the Democratic party were fatally compromised. So, we said, Party Unity My Ass and went to Denver to protest. And we were promptly marginalized and called racists. After the election, we tried to form a movement but some people wanted to go back to their old progressive tribes and others wanted to join the Tea Party, against our advice. In any event, nothing was going to get going until Barack Obama was shown to be the politician we thought he was. That is, one with an outsized ambition who was bought to serve the overlords and who didn’t have much political talent. Now that the honeymoon is over with Obama, suddenly everyone is aware of how corrupt the system is and how little influence the rest of us have in Congress or in the electoral process at large.
You didn’t have to be a Nobel winning economist to see it. All you needed to be was an menopausal, uneducated, working class, sino-peruvian lesbian type that the Obama campaign used to characterize us as, even though no one I know fit that description. So, welcome to Party Unity My Ass, Paul, one of the early ancestors of occupywallstreet. We will send you our new members package with complimentary white sheet and hormone replacement therapy samples.
Oh really? Go read this post at Susie’s place. It will make your blood boil. And then, go to Occupytheboardroom and give these bastards a piece of your mind.
Filed under: General | Tagged: American high school students, Atrios, galtian overlords, Indian students, Ivy league, Paul Krugman, scholarships | 44 Comments »