The Great American Meritocracy Machine

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Cheating is a thing.  It happens a lot. A few years ago, I was having a conversation with Gregoire, who ran the testing center at an institution I will call “Ravenwood College.”  Although Ravenwood accepted SAT and ACT scores, they also had their own in-house entrance exam which was administered on site.  Gregoire was meticulous in proctoring exams, checking paperwork and especially photo identification carefully. He recalled one time, when an applicant claimed to have left her ID in the Office of Admissions and said she would be right back. Later, the applicant returned with the ID and escorted by an admissions counselor, but it was an entirely different person.

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Always more to say

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How much more can be said? It seems like all the words have been used up.

I’ve been struggling with a new blog post for this site: one trying to tangle explicitly with self-promotion and brand in academia. Ironic, isn’t it, given that this site is basically an instance of these things? Well, regardless of how we feel about it, I think that academic self-promotion and brand is part of the landscape today, and I’ve been thinking about what to make of that. I’ve also been taking a little time off with my family, a last breather before the semester begins and the craziness comes with it. Of course another sort of craziness has come to this country. Although not surprising, recent events in Virginia (August 11, 2017) have been a stark and sharp reminder of my own white, male privilege – and of the contrasting reality for others around me.

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