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danah boyd | apophenia » Is Facebook Destroying the American College Experience?
"What most students (and parents) fail to realize is that the success of the American college system has less to do with the quality of the formal education than it does with the social engineering project that is quietly enacted behind the scenes each year. Roommates are structured to connect incoming students with students of different backgrounds. Dorms are organized to cross-breed the cultural diversity that exists on campus. Early campus activities are designed to help people encounter people whose approach to the world is different than theirs. This process has a lot of value because it means that students develop an appreciation for difference and build meaningful relationships that will play a significant role for years to come. The friendships and connections that form on campuses shape future job opportunities and help create communities that change the future. We hear about famous college roommates as exemplars. Heck, Facebook itself was created by a group of Harvard roommates. But the more basic story is how people learn to appreciate difference, often by suffering through the challenges of entering college together."

"Getting to know people whose life stories seem so foreign is hard. And yet, such relationship building across lines of difference can also be tremendously transformative."

[Goes well with: http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/02/27/dont_trust_anyone_over_70 and http://www.aeonmagazine.com/world-views/nigel-warburton-cosmopolitanism/ ]
danahboyd  education  highered  highereducation  socialengineering  diversity  facebook  homophily  difference  culture  culturaldiversity  empath  learning  tcsnmy  dorms  housing  trends  2013 
march 2013 by robertogreco

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