Political Privilege & U. of Illinois Admissions:

The Chicago Tribune reports on a brewing scandal at the University of Illinois law school. Government officials pressured U. of I. administrators to admit politically connected but unqualified applicants. Paul Caron rounds up more coverage here.

As Brian Leiter notes, many of those attacking U. of I. officials are missing the bigger picture.

the University of Illinois is hostage to the public purse for a lot of its operations, so every request for 'special consideration' on admissions from a politician with influence on the purse strings comes with an implied threat: admit this student, or lose funding. One can be sure Chancellor Herman understands that. Attacking university officials over this scandal is like attacking the victim of a robbery for handing over his money.
Leiter concludes: "the same story is waiting to be written about admissions at every state university in the country." I would like to think that public universities in some states are more insulated from political pressure -- Illinois is Blago country, after all -- but that may be a bit naive.

Related Posts (on one page):

  1. Illinois Faculty Respond to the Tribune:
  2. University of Illinois Admissions
  3. Political Privilege & U. of Illinois Admissions: