So I go to a top school, so think Harvard, Yale, or Princeton. And coming in, I almost felt a sort of insecurity, because I thought that I would be up against the grinders whom I knew in high school, and against kids who went to the best boarding schools, which everyone knows prepare kids well. And growing up, I thought you had to be a near-genius to go to those types of schools. I went to an international high school, that had a program called the International Baccalaureate program. It was pretty difficult, for a high school curriculum, and it definitely prepared me pretty well, especially its Extended Essay, a 4,000 word essay with citations written our senior year.
But as a junior at a top school, I feel pretty dissatisfied with the quality of my peers. No one is really passionate about anything. Everyone is just a striver, someone who works hard and games the system, which is fine, but it goes against some kind of popular conception that kids at top schools are really intellectually gifted or possess some kind of natural, horsepower that students at other schools lack. This is my third year here, and I haven't had a single class where I don't feel pretty above average.
There are some really intelligent kids that study in their rooms constantly, day and night, and as you'd expect, lack social skills.. And these kids are vastly outnumbered by kids who come to class, don't do the readings, and put together some kind of half-assed comment just to get their participation points. I guess it's fine people are like this. It's just time management. And you can't judge someone based on one class that you've taken with them..
But I feel like it really goes against just the popular conception that people at top schools are brilliant. It's pretty much a lie, isn't it? Seems like, from the employer's perspective, it must be pretty hard to find someone that is smart, has a good work-ethic, and has good social skills..