Warikoo

Dear Harvard, this is how you could run an admissions lottery

Dear Harvard, this is how you could run an admissions lottery

Dear Harvard College Admissions,

As you’re quite aware, there have been increasing calls for you to try out an admissions lottery system. Calls like the one here, for example, and here and here and here and here. A lot of people think the most fair way to handle admissions for a program that is worth a whole lot but only has an acceptance rate under 5% is to literally leave it up to chance. No legacy admissions, no diversity goals, no athletic recruitment, no committee votes. This, they say, would guarantee true diversity by taking away all biases and loopholes.

I completely understand your reluctance to go in this direction.

Don't read that, read this

Don't read that, read this

In a December blog post, I contemplated the "thought experiment" of using a lottery to decide admissions to elite universities.

But just a few days later, the author of that thought experiment published an article where she really gets down to the essence of the message: "In fact, we should discard the notion that admissions is a meritocratic process that selects the 'best' 18-year-olds who apply to a selective university. When we let go of our meritocracy ideals, we see more clearly that so many talented, accomplished young people who will be outstanding leaders in the future will not make it to the likes of Harvard, Stanford and Yale."