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April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Sept. 22, 2009 4 Tishrei 5770

Choosing The Right College

By Thomas Sowell




http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | There is so much for high school seniors and their parents to know about colleges that they not only need to get a lot of information but also need to make sure it is the right kind of information.


A number of college guides have useful information but, unfortunately, the best-known and most pretentious of these guides — "America's Best Colleges"— is grossly misleading.


There is no such thing as a "best" college, any more than there is any such thing as a "best" wife or a "best" husband. Who would be best for a particular person depends on that person.


Would we not consider it absurd if someone collected statistics on people and then used those statistics to rank individuals according to who would make the "best" wife or husband? Yet that is the approach "America's Best Colleges" is based on.


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A college that would be best for a particular student could be a terrible place for that student's brother or sister. One of them might find West Point a great experience, while the other would fit in perfectly at Reed College— and each might be miserable at the other institution.


Choosing the college that is right for a particular person is not about the rankings of institutions. It is about matching a student with an institution that can enable that person to flourish while there, and to graduate with an education that is a foundation for a fulfilling life in the years ahead.


Among the things you need to know about a particular college is whether it has a real curriculum or just a smorgasbord of courses, so that it is possible to graduate knowing nothing about history, economics or science, for example. Some of the most prestigious colleges in the country are places where you can graduate completely ignorant of such fundamental subjects.


What also matters is whether the intellectual atmosphere is one in which competing ideas are explored and debated, or one in which there is a prevailing orthodoxy of political correctness that a student can challenge only at the risk of being ridiculed by the professor, given a low grade or— in some places— suspended or expelled for violating a campus speech code by giving an honest opinion about things where an orthodoxy is imposed, such as issues involving "race, class and gender."


In short, what is important is not choosing the "best" college, according to some statistics that conceal the arbitrary choices behind the objective-looking numbers. What is important is choosing the right college for you.


The best of the college guides reflects that difference in its title— "Choosing the Right College." Its latest edition has just been published. Like people, it has put on some weight over the years and its seventh edition is now 1,140 pages long. Unlike some of us, however, its additional weight is muscle rather than fat.


"Choosing the Right College" tells you whether there is or is not a curriculum at each of the colleges it covers and whether classes are taught by professors or by graduate students.


It also tells you whether the intellectual atmosphere is free or is hidebound with political correctness, and plagued by professors who think their job is to use the classroom as a place to sound off about their political ideology to a captive audience, even when the course is about chemistry or accounting.


"Choosing the Right College" also presents information on such things as black separatist organizations at Lafayette College, for example. Whether you are for or against such things, you need to know about them, in order to choose what you think is right for you.


Co-ed living arrangements are also discussed, including just how co-ed they are— that is, whether males and females simply live in the same dormitory and/or share the same room and/or use the same bathrooms and showers. It also mentions some colleges where you don't have to live co-ed at all, if you don't want to.


If you want to get more than one college guide, there is also "Barron's Profiles of American Colleges" which has much more statistical detail and can be a useful supplment. But "Choosing the Right College" is a must— even if it is not carried in your local bookstore, and you have to order it on-line or from its publisher, ISI Books in Wilmington, Delaware.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Comment on JWR contributor Thomas Sowell's column by clicking here.

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