Politically correct Tufts University wants only "the best"
Tufts has a problem shared by most competitive universities: After it rejects the weak and admits the geniuses, too many decent applicants remain — about three for every spot. Recommendations and polished essays “all pretty much say the same things,” says Lee Coffin, dean of undergraduate admissions.
So for the second year, Tufts is inviting applicants to write an optional essay to help admissions officers pinpoint qualities the university values — practical intelligence, analytical ability, creativity and wisdom. These attributes make students intellectual leaders, according to Tufts’s dean of arts and sciences, Robert J. Sternberg, a psychologist whose work on measuring intelligence inspired the experiment. Applicants choose one of eight unlabeled questions, each designed to home in on a different attribute. Questions will change every year.
In the last admissions cycle, Mr. Coffin says, only a third of the essayists demonstrated one of the four qualities. They were twice as likely to be admitted as other applicants. Below are examples of each quality, as illustrated by members of this fall’s freshman class.
What political correctness does is to attempt to coerce respect for groups of people regardless of inward attitude. It attempts to coerce and enforce feelings and thoughts. It is akin to forcing conversion to a religion and demanding that the unwilling participant display reverence without belief. It demands insincerity, because it fails to acknowledge that you cannot coerce feeling or thought. You can only coerce behavior, outward compliance, which is hollow and empty. -- Vanishing American