Friday, October 05, 2007

Welfare for white folk

Here. Basically, white kids still get more money from universities (for being the kids of alumni, or whatever) than browner folk.

Now, here's a predicament for me. I'm a white man, and getting substantial funding from my university. The evidence seems to show that this is at least in part because the University is betting on me becoming a success, and giving them a bunch of money in turn later in life. (Also, my marks from undergrad kicked ass.) So, if I've been given an unfair advantage (possible) because the university expects a certain result (success, money for them) what is the proper response for me, from a social justice viewpoint?

Can I strike a blow for class equality by becoming a lifelong mediocrity? Can I attribute a life of sloth and indolence to my righteous refusal to bend to the will of the class hierarchy? Or should I simply choose to never give a single red cent back to my particular institution?


Raphael Alexander said...

Stop worrying about everyone else. Worry about yourself. Because you'll find out later in life nobody will give a damn about you if you fail, regardless of whether you are white, black, purple, or plaid.

Adam said...

I've never understood why anyone would want to give money back to their institution, except in cases of vanity where money amounts are large enough to get things names after you. Given your other readings (in the links), I think you can find better targets for money than already publically funded and tuition charging institutions (environment, survival gear, arable land, extended family, or one of the thousands of places that help the underfunded classes get to university).

I also got substantial funding for a few years, and I feel not a whit of an obligation to give "money back" to them. They paid for me to attend, and I did, but they didn't give me anything.

NonyNony said...

Find out if your college has a minority or a need-based scholarship program and contribute to one of those directly instead. If they don't, find a scholarship program that meets your goals for being a good citizen and donate to it directly. And make a point to tell the inevitable fund raising callers from your school where your money is going and why it's going there.

That way you get to "pay forward" what you were given for your education by directly helping out someone else who needs it.