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Robert Reich Laments the Sorry State of the U.S. News College Rankings

Robert Reich, UC BerkeleyRobert Reich, former Secretary of Labor under Clinton and now a Chancellor Professor of Public Policy at UC Berkeley came out swinging after the yet again disastrous ranking system unveiled by U.S. News and World Report a couple of weeks ago. U.S. News and World Report, that bloated monolith that routinely genuflects in front of the private universities that rake in the money, and in the process perpetuate the ever-escalating cost of college education, yet again relegated universities that promote community service and giving back to the back of the bus.

As Mr Reich notes in his sweeping critique,“Public universities are the major vehicles of upward mobility in America. They educate 73 percent of all college students. The Ivy League educates just 0.4 percent.” 

Without fail, U. S. News puts at the top of its list America’s most exclusive and expensive private universities that admit low numbers and small percentages of students from poor families.These elite institutions also train a disproportionately large share of the nation’s investment bankers, corporate chieftains, corporate lawyers, and management consultants…  Meanwhile, U.S. News relegates to lower rankings public universities that admit most of the young Americans from poor families who attend college, and which graduate far larger percentages of teachers, social workers, legal aide attorneys, community organizers, and public servants.

Reich also points to the newer Washington Monthly college rankings, which is a much-fairer system and focuses on criteria related to social mobility (crossing class lines), research, and service.



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Lindy is an independent UC admissions consultant, who works with both transfers and freshmen. She also has just completed her first novel, a supernatural thriller set in San Francisco.

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