As headlines and Instagram screamed the names of celebrities and venerable institutions involved in the scandal, a Harvard Westlake student, Alexa Rostovsky observed how educational establishments scrambled to contain the fallout and provide acceptable answers to the public.
Alexa Rostovsky, a student at Harvard Westlake School, observes, “I have definitely heard that the US higher education system has always been permeated by elitist culture, and that big money and prestige affect Ivy League admission decisions. This admissions scandal may prove the last straw for an even worse cheating bubble and bring on the arrival of a new era for college or university applicants. Now is the time for the self-made and entrepreneurial attitudes that can hold as much credibility as a prestigious degree, meaning that where young people complete their higher education does not defines their future, and it does not it guarantee it.”— The admissions scandal that erupted in the United States earlier in 2019 revealed years of bribery at top colleges and universities, with over 50 people implicated in the conspiracy nicknamed “Operation Varsity Blues.” As headlines and Instagram screamed the names of celebrities and venerable institutions involved in the scam, educational establishments scrambled to contain the fallout and provide acceptable answers to the public while also struggling to come to terms with their internal failings.
The bribery scandal broke during the year when Alexa Rostovsky started her college application process. While appalled by the sobering reality of the revelations, the ambitious and socially aware teenager looks beyond the immediate implications of the admissions scandal. She points out, “It is always scary when you are in the middle of your own application process and hear about sweeping changes, having no idea how they will impact you. Colleges must recognizing student potential that comes in the form of leadership, innovative thinking, humanitarian initiative, ambition, and integrity. That way they can define who they want to empower as future leaders and pillars of the community and stop being influenced by the number on a check signed by an applicant’s parents."
Alexa Rostovsky goes on to note that colleges will be forced to review their current practices and re-examine their values, addressing questions such as how closely applicants should reflect those ideals and the risk versus reward of prioritizing self-motivation, independent thinking, creativity and dedicated community service. One positive outcome of the admissions scandal is the fact that people have started asking more questions and demanding transparency, the tidal wave of their anger and indignation toppling barriers formerly thought to be indestructible. As society heads into an era of re-written rules and shifts in clout and perspective, the powers-that-be will have to change with the times lest they become the “powers-that-were.”
An exemplary student and dedicated volunteer, Alexa Rostovsky donates much of her time to community service and social initiatives supporting various worthy causes. Recognized by her school with the Humanitas Award, she is involved in numerous projects at different non-profit organizations, including The Grossman Burn Foundation, AHEAD WITH HORSES, and a remote reading program for children with learning disabilities. In her spare time, Alexa Rostovsky indulges her passion for the flute, culinary art, dance, and horseback riding.
ALEXA ROSTOVSKY (@alexaarostovskyy) – Instagram photos: https://www.instagram.com/alexaarostovskyy/
Alexa Rostovsky Explains the Benefits of Equine Therapy: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/alexa-rostovsky-explains-benefits-equine-165000772.html
Alexa Rostovsky Joins the Grossman Burn Foundation Youth Ambassadors Board: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/alexa-rostovsky-joins-grossman-burn-213500495.html
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