Admissions and Cole Aronson

A. Shaw

Yale should stop enrolling Cole Aronson. Nothing against him — except that he has nothing to do with the mission of the college as I see it.

Yale’s first concerns in admissions are the achievements and skill set of an applicant. Being Cole Aronson and writing op-eds like “Everyone Must Live in Single-Sex Dorms because Girls Make Me Nervous!” may earn shares and angry reacts on Facebook, but that won’t suffice for real accomplishment. If a Yale student wishes to succeed in his field, he requires courage, amicability and integrity. These are three big words that Cole Aronson learned for the SATs, which he thinks college athletes don’t have to take.

Now, clearly you don’t have to be smart to be Cole Aronson. Want proof? Just listen to what passes for English in the op-ed section of the Yale Daily News.

Perhaps you’ll say that the early mornings, the late nights, and the practiced calm required to be Cole Aronson instills virtues that merit Cole Aronson’s spot here. And yes, I concede that being Cole Aronson takes praiseworthy grit, and a “not here to make friends” attitude usually reserved for reality show contestants.

But the main point is that every virtue seen in Cole Aronson can be found in a far less Cole Aronson-y student. Yet, for some reason, Yale continues to reserve a spot for Cole Aronson. Everyone knows this. And this is in fact absurd. It’s actually worse than absurd, because Yale had to forgo better applicants, like ones you could stand to be around at a party, to keep Cole Aronson’s spot.

If Yale stopped churning out superb doctors, writers, scientists, lawyers, politicians, athletes, and engineers, it would cease to be a great school. But if it never produced another Cole Aronson, Yale would still be a great school.

I don’t think being Cole Aronson is a complete waste of resources or energy or time, especially for Cole Aronson. But a genius like Einstein or Tom Brady deserves everyone’s admiration more than Cole Aronson does. Cole provides benign entertainment. This is fine, but he is dust next to contemplation, art, or leading your team to a 21-14 win in the Harvard Yale football game.


Cole Aronson is a junior in Hopper College. He writes for the YDN—just not the sports section.

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