I give Northwestern University, and my college counselor, a big fat F.
Picking a college far away from home was about the worst possible decision I made. Everyone in my class had come from the local high schools and were very clic-ish as they had all been in the same high school classes together, and by the time Thanksgiving of Freshman year rolled around, I was so home sick I couldn't stand it any more. Not having the money to come home, I hot wired an abandoned and derrelict car full of leaves (go A student power!), got it running again by working on it all night long in the dark under a street lamp in the bitter winter cold, and drove half way across the United States just to get back home.
I went back and tried to finish the year, but ended up bombing out. I was was highly diabetic at the time from being poisoned by high fructose corn syrup soft drinks, and didn't know it, could barely concentrate and even tie my shoes on most of my bad days, and the Ivy League school at the time didn't and more than likely, still doesn't give a damn about whether their students succeeded or failed. I remember the Freshman welcome speech, where the speaker told us all... look to your left, and look to your right, 2 out of 3 of you will not graduate. I knew it would be me. I had been a straight A student all my life and the highest PSAT/SAT score of my class, but I knew I was going to bomb out and bomb out hard.
For the rest of my life, I lived with the stigma of being... stupid and a failure. That college can go to hell. That college was Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois. Of course, I was not stupid, I went on to create and achieve some fantastic things, but for the rest of my life I would be deprived of participating in the economic system as an employee... because I did not have a college degree.
My sister went to a local state college, came home very weekend or two to do her laundry, and graduated with a Bachelors Degree in 4 years. Because of my outstanding high school academic record, I had been accepted to the very same college with a full paid four year tuition. I should of went there.
I think the rudest thing was, the college had offered a free campus tour the summer before to acquaint yourself as a new student with the campus. You would be boarded with a current student who would 'show you around and show you the ropes'. When I got there, they had buddy students for everyone but me and one other person. We both ended up sleeping in the student lounge like refugee bums in a foreign far away city. A horrible welcome experience for someone who grew up on a family farm, to be invited to some place far away only to be completely ignored and have to find your own methods to survive, camping out in a dormitorium common room.
The person who's car I jacked, got it back, intacted, cleaned up, fixed and running, because I was stopped by the cops on the way back and spent 3 days in jail somewhere in the middle of nowhere when I took a wrong turn. Charges were dropped but I had to take a bus back and missed the first week of the semester coming back. After such a horrid experience, who can think of studying. All I could do was my best to survive in a foreign, hostile city. And when I bombed out, my parents were so mad at me.
If businesses operated like that, where 2 out of 3 products that came off their assembly line failed, and they were quite proud of that, that business would be out of business really fast, and that's what I think should happen to all such colleges that operate in such a way. Your job is to help me succeed, not do everything in your power to graft more money from the government through student loans and fight to keep your elitist snob status by doing everything you can to see that most of your students fail. These were the dreams of my family and myself, to be the first to go to college and blaze the trail for the entire family who had never had such an opportunity, and those jerks were just one hundred percent crooks, from the way the book store operated, to the way they planned to cut your financial aid and funding year after year after year.I give Northwestern University, and my college counselor, a big fat F.