The College Admissions Scandal: Investing in Education in a New Way

The college admissions scandal involving known stars Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman fuels the idea that the system already favors the wealthy and emphasizes the influence of money, power and status within today’s society. This situation proves that it doesn’t matter whether someone has the intelligence or the talent to secure a spot at their dream school, but rather whether they can "fake it 'til they make it" and swipe that same spot from under a qualified applicant’s feet.

Currently in the spotlight is Olivia Jade, daughter of Full House's Lori Loughlin. Olivia Jade was a student at the University of Southern California who publicly stated that she was ambivalent about how her experience at USC was going to be. “I don’t know how much of school I’m going to attend. But I do want the experience of, like, game days, partying… I don’t really care about school," the social media star stated in one of her Youtube videos that has since been taken down.

 

 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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A post shared by OLIVIA JADE (@oliviajade) on

 

But how were the celebrities and other wealthy elites able to get away with this? William Rick Singer of "The Key" would have to be accredited to devising this scheme. Parents would pay a third party--in this case, Mark Riddell—to take standardized tests for their children or even manipulate their responses to replace with his own. Though the security of the test may seem very high and the method of this bribery may seem almost impossible, test proctors were also accused of accepting bribes to allow this debacle to take place.

Applicants would also be photoshopped depicting their skills in certain activities. On top of that, Singer would provide a hefty bribe to Division 1 coaches to recruit them as future prospects for their sports teams, despite not bearing the skills to even secure a spot. These bribes would be disguised as donations for though undeserved, wherein fact these bribes were benefiting those who could pay for college many times over.

Prosecutor Eric Rosen stated that Singer would also falsify an applicant’s ethnicity in order to take advantage of affirmative action.

Singer claims that his organization is designed to “help” wealthy families with the admissions process: "OK, so, who we are ... what we do is we help the wealthiest families in the US get their kids into school.” Although he isn't wrong, the ethics surrounding the process to do so is questionable. It definitely has people thinking. The rich already have an advantage in money and resources to help boost their children's college applications—what more help could they possibly get?

It has been stated that Laughlin has contributed at least 500K to have their daughters pose as prospective recruits for the USC rowing team, even though neither of them have competed in such a sport. To put this “donation” into perspective, it could have easily provided a full ride to private institutions for at least 15 people who are unable to afford it.

 

 

Since this scandal blew up, Jade has since lost her collaboration deal with Sephora and Loughlin has been fired from Fuller House. Both of Loughlin's daughters have also decided to not return to USC following the backlash.

 

 

 

Although some may sympathize with the young star, others don’t hesitate to point out the wrongs of this situation and how the whole scam continues to feed the cycle of the power of money within the United States. Others resorted to filing a 500 billion dollar lawsuit against those indicted within the fraud.