Grading on a curve  JUL 23 2008

The second in an unplanned series of posts about the pitfalls of an elite education: John Summers on teaching the banal and privileged at Harvard.

In the first meeting of my first seminar of my first year, Kushner's son Jared entered my classroom and promptly took the seat across from mine, sharing the room, so to speak. I was drawing an annual salary of $15,500 (£7,700) and borrowing the remainder for survival in Cambridge, in order that he might be given the best possible education. Jared later purchased The New York Observer for $10 million, part of which he made buying and selling real estate while also attending my seminar. As publisher, one of his first moves was to reduce pay for the Observer's stable of book reviewers. I had been writing reviews for the Observer in an effort to pay my debts.

From earlier in the week: The Disadvantages of an Elite Education. Also relevant here is the growing discussion of gigantic college endowments and how best to use them.

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