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Selling Hope and CollegeMerit, Markets, and Recruitment in an Unranked School$
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Alex Posecznick

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9781501707582

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501707582.001.0001

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Introduction

Introduction

An Uncertain Beginning

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction
Source:
Selling Hope and College
Author(s):

Alex Posecznick

Publisher:
Cornell University Press
DOI:10.7591/cornell/9781501707582.003.0001

This introductory chapter talks about the individuals engaged in the ongoing activity required to work at Ravenwood College on a daily basis, specifically, their struggles, competing agendas, tensions, triumphs, and deliberations. Much of this analysis designates the institution's position in a hierarchy of excellence, particularly, on the lower end of the scale. In the ongoing, postsecondary hierarchy premised on elitehood, selectivity, resources, and prestige, Ravenwood was peripheral at best. Despite the extraordinary commencement ceremony, and what some call Ravenwood's “special spirit,” the American context positioned the institution as mediocre. Its service to nontraditional students (in terms of race, gender, and class) was starkly overshadowed by the pressure to maintain its position in the meritocracy.

Keywords:   Ravenwood College, postceondary heirarchy, elitehood, American context, nontraditional students, race, gender, meritocracy

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