Cream of the crop: the impact of elite education in the decade after college

Front Cover
BasicBooks, Nov 24, 1994 - Education - 383 pages
How do the college you attend and the choices you make in college shape your life? Is an elite education worth the investment? This book, based on a major longitudinal study, is the first to examine these vital issues systematically. In Cream of the Crop, we meet members of the Stanford University class of 1981 ten years after graduation. Their stories show how the rising professional elite has dealt with such issues as reconciling career and family, defining success, and finding satisfaction in work. Their lives tell us worlds about how our brightest young adults are shaping careers, family life, leisure activities, and plans for the future. And their experiences demonstrate how decisions made in college affect career and family choices. Herant Katchadourian and John Boli began studying these men and women as undergraduates, classifying them into four categories: Careerists, Intellectuals, Strivers, and Unconnected. Ten years later, they found remarkable consistency among the members of each group, and reached some exciting conclusions about how the former students had shaped their lives. They discovered that while the educational elite does make more money than the general population, in theory these people value intellectual challenge, creativity, and independence in a job more than money, power, and prestige. The authors found that students classified as Intellectuals in college spent the least time in graduate school. And they determined that, although the women generally earned 27 percent less than the men, they had higher household incomes - and greater earning parity with their spouses. The authors conclude that the approach students took - single-mindedly pursuing a career goalor sampling a wide range of courses - reverberated throughout their later professional and personal lives.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

CREAM OF THE CROP: The Impact of Elite Education in the Decade After College

User Review  - Kirkus

Pedestrian profiles dominate this sociological study of a cohort of Stanford graduates' first ten years in the real world. Katchadourian (Psychiatry/Stanford Univ.) and Boli (Sociology/Emory Univ ... Read full review


Crossing the Twenties
Four Pathways
Education for Success

11 other sections not shown

Common terms and phrases

About the author (1994)

John Boli, Emory University, is the author or co-author of six books and many articles and chapters on education, globalization, and political sociology, including The Globalization Reader (Blackwell,1999), Constructing World Culture (Stanford University Press,1999), Cream of the Crop (Basic Books, 1994) and Institutional Structure: Constituting State, Society, and the Individual (Sage, 1987).