I'm a father trying to help my son understand his college options.
My son is looking at a liberal arts school in the United States that used to be quite competitive. From the college statistics web sites, I see that it now has a very high acceptance rate (>85%; although around 30% of students who are accepted attend). (The acceptance rate is high relative to what I consider to be the college's peer institutions.) I also know that, in the past ten years, there have been two scandals large enough to make the regional or national news (one with a racial component, one with a sexual component). I personally don't think that the scandals reflect any systematic issues, and I have no reason to think that the quality of instruction was affected. But I am wondering to myself whether the school hasn't developed a bad reputation of some sort.
If it has, then I would have these concerns:
- Morale might be low on campus.
- If the school has become less selective, then presumably that will lower academic standards.
- If the school has a bad odor, it might make my son less attractive to job recruiters or graduate schools in the future.
What sources or resources can I use to evaluate whether this school has developed a poor reputation?