ST. LOUIS — The college cheating scandal involving Hollywood elite and CEO’s is shedding light on the high pressures of applying to college.
More than ever, students are overwhelmed with standards to have high test scores, strong GPA’s, high class rankings and diverse extracurricular activities.
“The main problem, in my opinion, is so much of the college admissions process is not based upon grades or test scores. They're based on things that have nothing to do with higher education,” said Jason Lum who is an individual college consultant in St. Louis.
He said the process needs to change. He also said, the sheer cost of applying is a lot.
According to U.S. World News, the cost of the SAT exam is $47.50. The ACT test costs $46.
That doesn’t even include the essay portion. That’s extra. Students who want to pay for a prep class or private tutor will have to shell out several hundred dollars and in some cases over $1,000.
The Princeton Review offers an 18-hour course for $600.
The college application fee can cost anywhere from $50 all the way up to $90. At Stanford University, which is one of the universities listed in the scandal, the application costs $90.
Lum said this entire process put wealthier families at an advantage.
He also said, many families need outside guidance like a counselor or a consultant.
“College counselors, in high schools today, are so overloaded that just by the sheer time constraints, they can't spend a lot of time with any one student,” said Lum.
Other educators have suggesting universities use a lottery system for the students who do meet the application qualifications.