The Privileged Poor: How Elite Colleges Are Failing Disadvantaged Students by Anthony Jack

Anthony Jack, sociologist and Assistant Professor of Education at Harvard University

March 25, 2021, 11:15AM - 12:15 PM EST
Virtual Via Zoom
Open to all 5-College Members

What does it mean to be a poor student on a rich campus? This question is all the more important as colleges and universities continue to take affirmative steps to socioeconomically diversify their campuses. In this talk, Anthony Jack examines how class and culture shape how undergraduates navigate college by exploring the “experiential core of college life,” those too often overlooked moments between getting in and graduating. Here, he sheds new light on how inequality is reproduced by contrasting the experiences of the Privileged Poor—lower-income students who graduate from boarding, day, and preparatory high schools—and the Doubly Disadvantaged—lower-income undergraduates who graduate from public, typically distressed high schools. Drawing on interviews with 103 undergraduates and two years of observing everyday life at an elite university, Jack interrogates the social and personal costs of exclusion that have implications for undergraduates’ objective opportunities and their social well-being.

We hope you will join us for a presentation and Q&A discussion with Anthony Jack on March 25th.

About Anthony Jack

Elite colleges are accepting diverse and disadvantaged students more than ever before—but to ANTHONY JACK, access does not equal acceptance. An Assistant Professor at Harvard and author of The Privileged Poor, Jack—once a low-income, first-generation college student himself—studies how poor students are often failed by the top schools that admit them. In talks, he details how class divides on campus create barriers to academic success—and shares what schools can do to truly level the playing field.

Anthony Jack, sociologist and Assistant Professor of Education at Harvard University, is transforming the way we address diversity and inclusion in education. His new book, The Privileged Poor: How Elite Colleges are Failing Disadvantaged Students, reframes the conversation surrounding poverty and higher education. In it, he explains the paths of two uniquely segregated groups. First, the “privileged poor”: students from low-income, diverse backgrounds who attended elite prep or boarding school before attending college. The second are what Jack calls the “doubly disadvantaged”—students who arrive from underprivileged backgrounds without prep or boarding school to soften their college transition. Although both groups come from economically disadvantaged backgrounds, the privileged poor have more cultural capital to navigate and succeed—in the college environment and beyond.

Read more about Anthony Jack.

Registration is free and link TBA