Elevated Status for Berea College

Berea College is “sainted.”

So says Gregg Easterbrook in his Tuesday Morning Quarterback (TMQ) commentary on ESPN this week. Easterbrook, talking about recent multi-million dollar gifts to elite college endowments, contends . . . the rich should not donate to the Ivy League, Stanford or a few other colleges that exist for the elite and already have ginormous endowments. Rather, the rich should give to schools for the average. At such colleges, donations reduce inequality, and make a difference in people’s lives. Donations to Harvard only make inequality worse.”  Easterbrook goes on to state that if donors had . . . given their fantastic sums to any of the colleges where students from average backgrounds struggle with loans — or to those schools that the [Washington] Monthly finds offer students the best bang for the buck — they would have changed the lives of ordinary people. Imagine the impact of either bundle at sainted Berea College, which accepts only students with financial need, amongst other criteria.

Imagine, indeed!

Berea College’s “saintly” status is not new. ESPN’s Tuesday Morning Quarterback has previously taken issue with the mega-endowments of Ivy League schools. In 2007, Michael Berheide, a Berea College professor of political science, was quoted  in Easterbrook’s TMQ  column. Berheide wrote, “Loved your point this week about Harvard and its endowment, asking them to consider free rides for everyone. Just thought you’d like to know we at Berea College have been doing that since 1855. We’ve never charged tuition. If we can do it, so can Harvard!” TMQ continued by stating: “Berea College is a sainted place, founded to educate the Appalachian poor and always tuition-free, though all students are expected to work to support the college. Many institutions of higher education give lip service to equal opportunity. Berea really means its motto: ‘God has made of one blood all peoples of the Earth. (Acts 17:26)'”

You can read the full story at: http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/page/TMQWeekFour140930/robert-griffin-iii-blaine-gabbert-why-mega-trades-work-nfl-tuesday-morning-quarterback?src=mobile

(The section on Berea College is about midway down the column.)

A link to the 2007 TMQ commentary with Michael Berhide’s quote is at: http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=easterbrook/070103

Categories: News, Places
Tags: ESPN, Gregg Easterbrook, Tuition-free, Washington Monthly

Berea College, the first interracial and coeducational college in the South, focuses on learning, labor and service. The College admits only academically promising students with limited financial resources, primarily from Kentucky and Appalachia, although students come from 40 states and 70 countries. Every Berea student receives a Tuition Promise Scholarship, which means no Berea student pays for tuition. Berea is one of nine federally-recognized Work Colleges, so students work 10 hours or more weekly, earning money for books, housing and meals. The College’s motto, “God has made of one blood all peoples of the earth,” speaks to its inclusive Christian character.