Another College Cheating Scandal: Personal Essay ‘Editors’ Reveal How They Cheat for Rich

Another College Cheating Scandal: Personal Essay ‘Editors’ Reveal How They Cheat for Rich

Tarpley Hitt

Photo Illustration by Sarah Rogers/The Daily Beast/Getty

A week ago, the sting operation dubbed Operation Varsity Blues exposed more information on well-heeled and well-known parents who rigged the college-admissions process, to some extent by paying proctors and ringers to take or correct tests for his or her kids. Not long after news of the scheme broke, critics rushed to point out that celebrity parents like Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman did need to break n’t what the law states to game the system.

For the ultra-rich, big contributions might get their name on a science building and their offspring a spot at a top-tier school—an option California Gov. Gavin Newsom recently called “legal bribery.” Perhaps the moderately wealthy can grease the admissions process with extensive SAT tutoring or, more problematically, college application essay editing.

In the admissions process, there’s a high premium regarding the personal statement, a 500-word essay submitted through the normal Application, about some foible or lesson, which aims to give readers a better feeling of the student than, say, a standardized test score. One or more university and advising blog rank the essay one of the “most important” components of the procedure; one consultant writing in The New York Times described it as “the part that is purest for the application.”

But while test scores are completed by the student alone—barring bribed proctors, that is—any number of individuals can alter an essay before submission, opening it up to exploitation and less-than-pure tactics at the hands of helicopter parents or college-prep that is expensive who cater to the 1 percent.

In interviews aided by the Daily Beast, eight college application tutors shed light on the economy of editing, altering, and, on occasion, outright rewriting personal statements. The essay editors, who consented to speak from the condition of anonymity because so many still work with their field, painted the portrait of an industry rife with ethical hazards, where in fact the line between helping and cheating can become hard to draw. ادامه مطلب …

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