I was listening to the Slate Magazine Political Gabfest: The Never Alone edition as I do every week. Their third topic (30:00) was the affirmative action case brought by Abigail Fisher against The University of Texas and race-based admissions policies being accepted by the Supreme Court.
At some point in to it (38:00) David Plotz supports the policy of automatic admission to the university by the top 10% of graduating high school students (in the state) as a nice alternative mechanism to obtaining diversity. The truth of the matter is the 10% isn’t as automatic as it was in the 80s, and the 10% policy has been around for a long time – though I’m not sure if it predates affirmative action laws.
“The 10% idea, taking the top 10% of a class, is a really appealing one. … I presume that at Texas A&M, which is sort of second tier, maybe it’s the top 20% or something. …”
A a child of two UT alumni, and the 4th generation graduate of the UT, I laughed heartily at that one. It’s been a few decades since I’ve had to deal with college admissions, but I recall their policies being relatively the same (I was accepted by both). I can’t wait to hear if John’s inbox filled up with letters from Aggies.
Then Plotz turns around and calls the top 10% of the class “ten percenters” which is generally a term for people who don’t put in more than 10% effort. And it of course make Frank Black‘s voice stream through my brain singing about a slacker soda jerk: Continue reading