They’re unlikely to function as effective team members in an organization that has to deal with everyday realities

Saturday, June 12th, 2021

R.R. Reno is not inclined to hire graduates from America’s elite universities:

A decade ago I relished the opportunity to employ talented graduates of Princeton, Yale, Harvard and the rest. Today? Not so much.

As a graduate of Haverford College, a fancy school outside Philadelphia, I took interest in the campus uproar there last fall. It concerned “antiblackness” and the “erasure of marginalized voices.” A student strike culminated in an all-college Zoom meeting for undergraduates. The college president and other administrators promised to “listen.” During the meeting, many students displayed a stunning combination of thin-skinned narcissism and naked aggression. The college administrators responded with self-abasing apologies.

Haverford is a progressive hothouse. If students can be traumatized by “insensitivity” on that leafy campus, then they’re unlikely to function as effective team members in an organization that has to deal with everyday realities. And in any event, I don’t want to hire someone who makes inflammatory accusations at the drop of a hat.

Student activists don’t represent the majority of students. But I find myself wondering about the silent acquiescence of most students. They allow themselves to be cowed by charges of racism and other sins. I sympathize. The atmosphere of intimidation in elite higher education is intense. But I don’t want to hire a person well-practiced in remaining silent when it costs something to speak up.


  1. Bob Sykes says:

    Expecting young people to speak up against the reigning dogma at the risk of expulsion and black listing is unrealistic. Everyone everywhere goes along with the crowd just to survive.

    He goes on to recommend the students at state schools. The better state schools, like those in the ACC, Big Ten, Pac 12, are, indeed, every bit as good as the Ivies and Haverford College, and many of their students are every bit as good as those in elite schools. But good state schools get much of their faculty from the Ph.D. programs at the elite schools, and their faculties are gradually becoming infected with the Ivy disease. In the long run, all college graduates are defective.

  2. Bomag says:

    “In the long run, all college graduates are defective.”

    That’s a thing. Whatever the school, they use the same books; the same pedagogy, for the most part.

    The few reports I get from the working world have recent college graduates listed as damaged goods. Those rising through the ranks are much more functional.

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