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Pope Should Have Scholarships Across the Nation Named After Him -- in Every LAC
on October 14, 2008
When I was a parent of a senior, I became engulfed with the gossip and happenings of college admissions. It really became a chronic habit to ask others about their child's latest quests. And, when I investigated, I started with this book - start with the best.
There are many other good books with clever names. But after reading most of those, I would always return to this book.
I may know more than the average person about the topic. I had applied to schools at various levels. My siblings had too. We had attended good to great schools. And, our father was a professor at two major universities -- those with ivy on their walls.
When I read this book, a bulb lit. That epiphany reminded me of that one clear day in my childhood when I thought my father was not nearly as dumb as my teenage attitude knew him to be, and I had the nerve to ask him, "Dad, where are the best students for your graduate studies coming from -- name the schools." He immediately spat out many of the small ivies in the northeast. I did not want that as mother would be too close. Then he said these strange words, "Grinnell, MacAllister, Carleton, U Chicago, Pomona, Pitzer, Occidental . . ." Loren Pope would agree - one hundred percent.
I then knew dear old dad was not so dumb after all. And, neither was Loren Pope when he delivered this grand endorsement of the liberal arts education.
This book tells you why small liberal arts schools are not second fiddle to the larger and better known universities. The well known liberal arts schools are pearls. They are where Ph.D.'s go to teach. And the students, through that amazing nuturing process, mature to become much better minds than when they walked their first steps on the campus grounds. They are truly "learning institutions."
Liberal arts schools epitomize the concept of higher education. And, many have become so beloved by their alumni that tuitions are not as forbidding as they may have been in the years of sweater-clad bobby-socked coeds. Many of the schools loved by Pope are so well endowed that they are "need blind" with their admissions. Perfect admissions concepts at what are deemed nearly perfect learning environments.
His simple advice -- the ivies (for undergraduate) are overrated and liberal arts schools are either underrated (those we know about) or HIGHLY underrated (those we know little if nothing about).
Chock full of statistics and years of experience, Pope basically created a new image for many liberal arts schools. He is the Don for arguing the merits to liberal arts education. He unfortunately died recently, and should probably have a scholarship named after him at most of the liberal arts schools in America. He is the progenitor of liberal arts educational superiority. His written beliefs were contrarian to the ivy state. He was the original. This book was the original's original publication of these beliefs. This is the bible of why liberal arts education is one of America's greatest resources.