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Selling hope and college : merit, markets, and recruitment in an unranked school

Author: Alexander Posecznick
Publisher: Ithaca, New York : Cornell University Press, 2017. ©2017
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"Admission to selective institutions, where extremely fine distinctions are made, is characterized by heated public debates about whether standardized exams, high school transcripts, essays, recommendation letters, or interviews best indicate which prospective students are 'worthy.' And then there is college for everyone else. But what goes into less-selective college admissions in an era when everyone feels  Read more...
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Additional Physical Format: Online version:
Posecznick, Alexander.
Selling hope and college.
Ithaca ; London : Cornell University Press, 2017
(DLC) 2016037909
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Alexander Posecznick
ISBN: 9781501707582 1501707582 9781501709821 1501709828
OCLC Number: 956775541
Description: xxi, 213 pages ; 24 cm
Contents: An uncertain beginning --
Extraordinary mediocrity --
How to sell hope and mobility --
It's all about the numbers --
Being a "real" college in America --
Financing education and the crisis of sustainability --
An uncertain future: whither Ravenwood College?
Responsibility: Alex Posecznick.

Abstract:

"Admission to selective institutions, where extremely fine distinctions are made, is characterized by heated public debates about whether standardized exams, high school transcripts, essays, recommendation letters, or interviews best indicate which prospective students are 'worthy.' And then there is college for everyone else. But what goes into less-selective college admissions in an era when everyone feels compelled to go, regardless of preparation or life goals? 'Ravenwood College,' where Alex Posecznick spent a year doing ethnographic research, was a small, private, nonprofit institution dedicated to social justice and serving traditionally underprepared students from underrepresented minority groups. To survive in the higher education marketplace, the college had to operate like a business and negotiate complex categories of merit while painting a hopeful picture of the future for its applicants. Selling Hope and College is a snapshot of a particular type of institution as it goes about the business of producing itself and justifying its place in the market. Admissions staff members were burdened by low enrollments and worked tirelessly to fill empty seats, even as they held on to the institution's special spirit. Posecznick documents what it takes to keep a ?mediocre? institution open and running, and the struggles, tensions, and battles that members of the community tangle with daily as they carefully walk the line between empowering marginalized students and exploiting them."--Provided by publisher.

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