Stop stressing about getting in to a ‘good’ college

A theory I have believed but could never totally prove has been studied by two economists.  Researchers Stacy Dale and Alan Krueger discovered graduates of elite colleges made no more money than graduates of other universities in a study 20 years ago. Hard to believe, eh?  Dale and Krueger have revisited their paper and studied this again controlling for even more factors.  It seems that when you account for the schools that the students applied to and were accepted by the earning difference disappears.  As I’ve counseled many a high school student the key is confidence, ambition, drive and work ethic not the name on the diploma.  I don’t know how many actually believe me (Parents especially).  These economists prove that even applying to a school that rejects you says a lot about you.  Mr. Krueger states:

My advice to students: Don’t believe that the only school worth attending is one that would not admit you. That you go to college is more important than where you go. Find a school whose academic strengths match your interests and that devotes resources to instruction in those fields. Recognize that your own motivation, ambition and talents will determine your success more than the college name on your diploma.

Bullying and popularity

Interesting, new research as we continue to seek ways to stop this epidemic. However, I know the real solution.  Only when an entire school, school district, community creates a culture of no bullying.  Schools routinely give lip service to anti-bullying with fancy programs and curriculum but it only works when every last adult from principal down to custodian and cafeteria worker creates and cultivates an environment of zero tolerance.  Schools continue to make more elaborate and rationalizing excuses instead of doing the difficult job of complete culture change.  It’s not a program, it’s a complete cultural overhaul that every adult involved in and around a school should be dedicated to do.  A few are doing it… sadly, most are not.