Monday, March 29, 2010

682 A New College Exam

682 A New College Exam

Maxie used to say that college was a great idea. It helps keep the unemployment rate lower. These days, we need no special help in keeping anyone out of the work force. But that said, there's some truth here.

This may be part of the reason so many young people jump through the strangest of hoops to get into the school of their choice, although many will choose "Any school that'll have me."

They go through high school, sort of learning and sort of studying what they think or their teachers think will be on the Regents exams or other statewide tests that allege to show competence in a subject. They'll join the math club or the debate club or the football team and do community service. They'll take those awful SATs. But there's one test they all seem to ignore and it's one that might help them get into schools.

The Personality test.

At Antioch, most of the students -- graduate and undergrad -- seemed to have similar personality quirks. It wasn't universal, and Antioch is a small school with a certain reputation. It might be a good guess that most of the students at Bob Jones University have the same situation, only with different quirks.

Now living in a town that is home to a fairly large college, it's harder to spot these similarities. There are 44-thousand students attending. Maybe more. And yet, most of those encountered seem to have, well, similar personality quirks. It differs by major, it differs by age. But it doesn't seem to differ among genders, ethnic groups or backgrounds. Many many of those kids are very similar in personality.

The king of this heap is NYU. There is a distinctive NYU personality. Once you recognize it, it's obvious. You can spot 'em a mile away. Old, young, recent, ancient, New Yorker, non-New Yorker. Doesn't matter. Never met anyone from there who didn't have it.

So now comes the hard part. You have to figure out what your particular quirks are and where they'd be most welcome. Not an easy task. In fact, if you actually accomplish this two-parter, you're obviously well qualified for a higher education anywhere of your choosing. But if you can do it and land the interview, chances are the admissions guy will at some level, probably subconscious, believe you "fit" and invite you to become a student.

So start those college visits early. Don't go during a semester break. Don't make appointments. Just GO. And see if you can find whether the random students you see, hear or meet are "just like me." If they are, you're likely to get a "yes" on your application. If they aren't, move on.


Shrapnel:

--First day of re-retirement and how to start? Why, by reading the news, of course. Old habits are hard to break.

--Parkinson's Law says work expands to fill the time available. Is there a reverse? Leisure expands to fill the time available seems doubtful.

I'm Wes Richards. My opinions are my own but you're welcome to them.®
©WJR 2010

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