Talk about the Book
“In Selling Hope and College, Alex Posecznick successfully demonstrates that the notion of mediocrity in higher education is not an objective reality in and of itself but rather is a function of the way higher education institutions have generally become systematized.”
“But it is worth reflecting on what, taken as a body of literature, the ensemble of anthropological writing on the university largely, if not entirely, leaves out . . .”
“Alex Posecznick’s topic and argument are timely and compelling and his voice is readable and interesting. I feel like I know this school and its people and troubles as well as its specialness. The stories linger with me when I put the book aside.” –Jane Jensen, Associate Professor, University of Kentucky, coauthor of Piecing It…
“Although Posecznick rightly underscores the ways in which Ravenwood is unique, many institutions in the United States ought to pay closer attention to the college’s experiences, as they face an increasingly common set of challenges: how to stand out in a crowded field, how to effectively educate students representing diverse backgrounds and pursuing diverse pathways,…
“For most of its history, Ravenwood has prided, and marketed, itself as a progressive, alternative institution, but Mr. Posecznick observes that the niche it has carved out for itself has also shackled it.”
“Over time, the selection (admissions) processes of elite institutions have come to be focused on keeping people out, since selecting only the very best people requires rejecting everyone else, the vast majority of applicants. Contrariwise, for an unranked institution like Ravenwood, admissions processes are designed to take people in, in short, to find customers.”
“Ten years ago, Creating a Class: College Admissions and the Education of Elites (Harvard University Press) provided an unusual look into the admissions process at a competitive liberal arts college. The author, Mitchell L. Stevens, an associate professor of education at Stanford University, embedded himself in the admissions office of a college. He was permitted…
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- The Chronicle of Higher Education review (premium content, 7/30/17).
- Interview on Knowledge@Wharton, Business Radio (7/20/17).
- InsideHigherEd review (6/5/17).