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School privilege

Where'd you go to school?

Seems like an innocuous question, but the answer speaks volumes about you and how people categorize you.

I went to the University of Chicago. And it's tricky to answer that question. In part because it's highly rated, but it's not necessarily well-known outside of academic circles. Some consider it more rigorous than Harvard. Others probably think it's a community college. Others know it's where the President taught law and where the first controlled thermonuclear reaction was created. Also where letter jackets for sports were invented.


So when I answer that question, it's always weird. Because I don't want to sound arrogant (others have written recently how black men have to avoid sounding arrogant). But the dork in me has an appreciation for simply presenting the facts.

But bigger than that is the school privilege that never gets talked about. I know I've gotten jobs based on the name of the school I attended. And I'm sure that privilege is greater for the Ivies, Stanford, and probably those expensive liberal arts joints like Vassar and Swarthmore. And I don't know why people don't talk about that privilege.

So where'd you go? And what do you make of the politics of your answer? And why don't we talk about school privilege?

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