The 1% Is Overrepresented in the Ivy League


If your parents count themselves among the top 1%, you’re 77 times more likely to attend an Ivy League college than your peers from families in the bottom 20% of the U.S.’ income distribution.

Why the focus on Ivy League universities? Of course, the pool of top institutions of higher education extends far beyond that group. But in mobility terms, say the authors, you’re more likely to move from the bottom quintile into the top 1% if you attend elite colleges, including those that comprise the Ivy League. In other words, elite colleges can confer mobility in powerful ways.

The complete article

Jack Gao — Institute for New Economic Thinking

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The social logic of Ivy League admissions


This is a relatively old article by Malcolm Gladwell. The article looks at how the admission requirements and procedures evolved over the years for the Ivy League schools. It is interesting to note the things considered important for admission to these schools. I particularly liked the part about the burden of being defined by the school.

Once, I attended a wedding of a Harvard alum in his fifties, at which the best man spoke of his college days with the groom as if neither could have accomplished anything of greater importance in the intervening thirty years. By the end, I half expected him to take off his shirt and proudly display the large crimson “H” tattooed on his chest. What is this “Harvard” of which you Americans speak so reverently?

The complete article

The New Yorker –Malcolm Gladwell

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