As if on cue, only a couple of weeks after my article wondering whether – given its bizarre admissions formulae – Harvard was any longer fit for purpose comes the astounding story of Kaitlyn Younger (see Douglas Belkin, “To Get into the Ivy League, Extraordinary Isn’t Always Enough These Days,” Wall Street Journal [April 21, 2022]).
Kaitlyn Younger is a high school senior in a public school in McKinney, Texas, a suburb of Dallas. In addition to an uncountable number of after school activities and a 3.95 grade average, she just happened to score 1550 on her combined SAT’s. These reflect on – math and English – an average of 775 each. Or perhaps 800 on her English, 750 on her math. OK, so maybe she is as dumb with numbers as in the bottom quartile (which starts at 780) of MIT students. In any case, this score places her in the top one half of one percent of US applicants. In comparison, the loose and easy National Merit Scholarships require only that you be in the top 1% to be a coveted National Merit Finalist. Given that approximately 1.5 million students took the SAT in 2021, 2021 SAT Suite of Assessments Program Results – The College Board , this means she is in the top 7,500 SAT test-takers in the country. Combined with the 1.2 million who took the ACT instead, How Many People Get a 34, 35, 36 on the ACT? Score Breakdown (prepscholar.com),with the combined total being 2.7 million, and assuming no overlap, she would still be in the top 13,500 students in the U.S. Although that might not entitle her to an automatic admit to the Ivys, which in aggregate admit 11,700 (approximately) undergraduates annually, it is worth noting that her combined SAT scores exceed the average combined SAT scores of every school in the country, including Harvard, Yale, MIT, University of Chicago, and, incredibly, even Cal Tech. See summary list below.
The McComb business school at the University of Texas, where she was rejected, has an abysmal average SAT of 1350 (625 average math/english), plus a lot of black faces on their website. USC, the ultimate richy, rich, rich party school, good for contacts if not for education, has an asserted – though not quite believable – average SAT of 1440 – 110 points below Miss Younger’s. Cornell’s average appears to be 1480, 70 points below Miss Younger’s, although it may be somewhat higher for the schools to which she presumably applied, either the College of Arts and Sciences or Dyson.*
Well, now for the punch line. She applied to 12 schools, including Harvard, Yale, Brown, Cornell, University of Pennsylvania, University of Southern California, Berkeley, Northwestern, all of which rejected her, Rice (waitlist), University of Texas (Austin) (accepted but not at her preferred school, McComb), and the University of Arizona (accepted) plus one other, not named in the article.
Nitpickers could argue that she made a strategic mistake in not applying to the rest of the Ivys and the University of Chicago (probably superior in a lot of respects to the Ivys). Perhaps she would have gotten into one of those. But then again, perhaps – even probably – not. Each of the other Ivys and the U of C, for example, are more selective than Cornell, Northwestern, USC, and the University of Texas, all of which rejected her. Nitpickers could also argue that a middle class girl from Texas had no more chance getting into a “lunch club” school like USC (read: the Beverly Hills crowd on the dumb end) than she would have of getting into the Knickerbocker or Brooke Clubs in New York based on a blind application and SAT scores.
To put this in perspective, the total students admitted to the Ivys to which she did apply along with their “lower than Kaitlyn” SAT averages are as follows:
Here is the “dumber than Kaitlyn” crowd:
- Harvard 1,600 (Average SAT 1520)
- Yale 1,600 (Average SAT 1515)
- Brown 2,500 (Average SAT 1485)
- Cornell* 2,000 (Average SAT Arts: 1480 – not clear if A&S higher)
(1,000 if Arts and Sciences only; 2,000 incl eng.)
Total Ivy applied to: 7,700
Plus, Ivies not applied to:
- Columbia 1,500 (Average SAT: 1505)
- Princeton: 1,345 (Average SAT: 1505)
- Dartmouth 1,200 (Average SAT: 1500)
Grand Total Ivies: 11,745
Plus: (Non-Ivies she applied to)
- Stanford 2,000 (Average SAT 1505)
- Northwestern 1,900 (Average SAT 1495)
- USC 3,700 (Average SAT 1440)
- Berkeley 6,400 (970 if count only out of state attending/admits)
Grand Total All Applied to
by which rejected less USC: 12,600 (rounded, counting only 970 out-of-state at Berkeley)
Total including USC: 18,300 (rounded)
Plus others she applied to, to which not accepted:
- Rice 2,000 (approx) (1505 SATs)
- University of Texas (McCombs) 1,200 (estimate) (Average SAT 1350 – 625 each !!)
Grand Total Applied to
and not Accepted: 15,800 (not counting USC)
Grand Total Counting USC: 19,500 (counting USC)
- MIT (Average SAT 1535)
- Cal Tech: (Average SAT 1545)
- University of Chicago 1,100 (Average SAT 1520)
Total ideal application list:
Ivies, plus Stanford,
University of Chicago and
Northwestern and Berkeley 17,715 (Berkeley: counting 970 out of state only)
One would think that if she had applied to all the Ivies, plus Stanford, University of Chicago, and Northwestern, a total matriculant pool of approximately 17,700 she would have been accepted in at least one.
However, not so fast. Far more disturbing than the fact Kaitlyn applied to an inadequate number of top schools – and failed to get in any she did apply to — is the sub-text of the above-linked article by Douglas Belkin for the Wall Street Journal.
The sub text is that even if she had applied to the whole top-tier group she probably would have gotten in nowhere.
Namely, that the intake pool of Whites is now about half the total intake pool of 17,700 for the top Ivy and Ivy-equivalents computed above. That gets you down to 8,350. And of that, half are legacies and athletes.
So the remaining pool for high IQ, non-connected, Whites is a tiny 4,175 – essentially the intake pool of two lesser Ivies. In other words, not only are whites being shoved aside for minorities, but the admissions process purposefully shoves aside the smart Whites in favor of not-so-smart Whites.
Although all these numbers are approximate and inexact, the message to any recruiter at these top schools is that, if the applicant is a White, he is probably dumb. The high-IQ Whites are purposefully being squeezed out of the most prominent schools, so that they will have fewer opportunities to get the truly good and high paying jobs that allow the elite to accumulate capital and dominate society: The message? Whites no longer wanted in the elite.
They are being squeezed out. Their oxygen is being cut off.
As Belkin reports “Nearly half of white students admitted to Harvard between 2009 and 2014 were recruited athletes, legacy students, children of faculty and staff, or on the dean’s interest list—applicants whose parents or relatives have donated to Harvard, according to a 2019 study published in the National Bureau of Economic Research.
“At Harvard, low-income students with top academic scores had an admit rate of 24% compared to 15% for all other applicants, according to a 2013 study by the school. Harvard has said it believes enrolling a diverse student body is important because the school wants students to learn to work with people from different backgrounds.
“The middle class tends to get a little bit neglected,” said Hafeez Lakhani, a private college counselor in New York who charges \$1,200 an hour.” .
How much better for society that a brilliant White like Kaitlyn be buried at the University of Arizona (her choice after her passel of rejections), from which she can launch into a middle-level job in an auto dealership. How much better this than having her be a superstar stand-out at Harvard, Penn, or Cornell (which, given her massive IQ she undoubtedly would be), taking one of those coveted jobs at Goldman Sachs or Morgan Stanley which can make you several times a millionaire before you hit age 35. How much better to grind her hard working all-too-White, all too admirable family down into the dust of the soon-to-be destroyed lower-middle class than to allow her any chance at wielding power, accumulating capital, or getting anything else she might want in our society. How much better that she had never even been born.
Ok, honkey: so much for the oxygen. Its gone.
As they say in the outer boroughs:
Whacchya gonna do now, big boy?
- Note, the Dyson school of undergraduate business has the lowest admissions rate – 2.9% – of any at Cornell, followed by the 7% admissions rate of the College of Arts and Sciences – 7.9% –so the school to which she applied may – in part- explain her rejection at Cornell. Likewise, the Penn admissions rate was 9%; the Wharton undergraduate business school (at Penn) admit rate was lower, approximately 7.9%.