Letter: Illinois for the qualified

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This letter is in response to Mr. Mowery’s letter that appeared in Thursday’s paper. The xenophobic thought process displayed by Mr. Mowery was an insult to all that attend this University. The University of Illinois accepts students based on merit, not one’s home address. I think we only need look at our best and brightest to see that a residence in the Land of Lincoln should not be a prerequisite to learn at the University of Illinois. Our two-time Nobel Prize winner, John Bardeen, was born and schooled in Wisconsin. Should an Illinoisan been hired in his place? Ang Lee, the Academy Award winning director, came here to study from Taiwan. Should he have been turned away? A fair admissions process does not harm the taxpayers of this state. In fact, the accomplishments of this University only further prove the worth of their money. Furthermore, the U of I gives Illinois taxpayers a break, the decrease in tuition. The fact that an Illinois resident pays taxes does not give them the right to attend this University. They have to earn it just like everyone else.

Here is the bottom line. I believe the founders of this University would be proud to see that this campus is home to some of the best and brightest in the world. What began as a land grant agricultural and industrial school is now a public ivy. The University of Illinois will only keep this title by accepting those with the most merit, not just those with a certain address. In this Illinois resident’s opinion, all are welcome.

Jonathan Lester

Junior in Business

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