Sunday, December 6, 2009

Harry Potter and college

High-school senior Lauren Edelson objects to a cynical new strategy in college marketing:

Back when I was a junior, before I’d printed off an application or visited a campus, I had high expectations for the college application process. I’d soak up detailed descriptions of academic opportunity and campus life — and by the end of it, I’d know which college was right for me. Back then, I knew only of these institutions and their intimidating reputations, not what set each one apart from the rest. And I couldn’t wait to find out.

So I was surprised when many top colleges delivered the same pitch. It turns out, they’re all a little bit like Hogwarts — the school for witches and wizards in the Harry Potter books and movies. Or at least, that’s what the tour guides kept telling me.
Read more:

Taking the Magic Out of College (New York Times)

I’ll suggest an acronym for this sort of marketing strategy: TLC. Not “Tender Loving Care” but “Treat ’em Like Children.”

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