Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Amway of the Ivy League

I just came across the latest USNews school rankings courtesy of Yahoo!.  (You do need a period at the end of a sentence that has Yahoo! as the last word, right?)  Shamefully, Carnegie Mellon ranks 23.  At least University of Chicago lands near the top.  I don't have to hang my head in shame.

More importantly, Harvard had a 6.3% acceptance rate, according to USNews.  Harvard had 34,302 applicants last year, and accepted 2,032.  Each of those applicants forked over $75 for the privilege of learning whether or not they could pay $160 something thousand for four years of college fun.

(But wait, 2,032 is not 6.3% of 34,302!  I know.  Not my math, sorry.  I don't think matriculation accounts for the difference either, as there are 6,657 undergrads, per USNews...They clearly don't have Chicago quants at USNews!)

I doubt these students applying to Harvard are price sensitive.  If they charge $100 instead of $75, who cares?  It's Harvard, after all!  Tuition and fees reach $40,866, what's $75, $100, $200?

The more they charge applicants buying lottery tickets, the more students attend at lower cost.  Each additional dollar of applicatin fee translates into one more full scholarship!  Call the marketing department: Harvard: Hey You Never Know! 

In fact, I suggest Harvard crowd sources this problem.  Each year, tuition should be set only AFTER the next year's applicants have paid up.  Think about 6,657 "goodwill ambassadors" roaming the streets, drumming up applicants to keep tuition down!  Harvard: The Amway of the Ivy League!