Friday, September 21, 2012

Welcome to Ethical College Admissions

Welcome to Ethical College Admissions.  As the name implies, this is a conversation about the ethical issues surrounding the college admissions process.  I started to call it Ethical Admissions for simplicity sake, but was afraid it would be mistaken for a place to confess moral lapses and improprieties. 

This blog pulls together several important strands in my professional life.  Early in my career I taught ethics at the college level, but I have spent close to 30 years as a college counselor.  In 2010 I had the opportunity to serve as President of the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), and enjoyed the chance to write about the issues facing our profession, including the changing admission landscape and the need for maintaining common ethical ground.

Ethical College Admissions will be better at asking questions than at providing definitive answers.  It will interpret both “ethics” and “college admissions” broadly, and it will err on the side of ideals and principles, not afraid to look naïve.  It will see college admissions as a noble profession rather than the sales department of the Enrollment Management division of Higher Education, Inc.

Please join the conversation.


Jim Jump


  1. I am very interested in this blog, first, because I believe college admissions has lost sight of the prime purpose of the pursuit -- education. As many have said before me, it is not a goal or trophy to be won. I see too many similarities between the Wall Street debacle, Bernie Madoff, and the use of drugs in cycling. When one begins to lose sight of the true goal and looks only at the process as one in which one wins (and therefore others must lose) and money begins to be the prime focus, then it is ripe for fraud (look at Clarement McKenna or Emory). I am very concerned that college admissions is headed (has already headed) down that path. I see and saw many examples of how college advising/guidance (I can't see much "counseling" even though Bob Bardwell rightly wants this changed) is becoming a business, both in the mailings I get and the recent NACAC exhibitor area.

    I think this blog will be one of the areas that will keep the focus on "counseling" and helping students grow in their self-knowledge and pursue their education with a renewed energy and not just the goal of getting into the most prestigious college or garnering the highest paying job as is touted by so much of the media and is seen on the NACAC exhibit floor.

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