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  • U.S. President Barack Obama’s oldest daughter, Malia, will begin studying at Harvard University

  • in 2017. Malia will join a long line of Presidentschildren who have studied at the elite group

  • of universities. So what is the appeal of an Ivy League education, and why are these

  • schools so powerful?

  • Well, the Ivy League is synonymous with elitism and prestige, and its schools are generally

  • regarded as some of the best in the world. The origin ofIvy Leagueis still a

  • matter of debate, however one legend attributes the name to the Roman NumeralIV”, which

  • represented the original four institutions. Today, the official Ivy League encompasses

  • eight private universities in the Northeast United States. Although their reputations

  • and rankings vary, Ivy League schools are collectively known for having high tuition,

  • demanding curriculum, slim acceptance rates, and enormous financial endowments.

  • Together, the eight schoolsendowments add up to nearly $120 billion dollars. That’s

  • roughly equal to the entire worth of the US state of Arkansas. Harvard leads the pack

  • by a large margin, reporting a nearly $40 billion dollar endowment in 2015. Of course,

  • this only represents a university’s donated assets, which excludes their property, tuition

  • earnings, athletic income and the millions of dollars they receive in federal and state

  • grants. That means an Ivy League school’s total worth is much, much higher than its

  • publicly disclosed endowment. The majority of their donations come from alumni. For instance

  • at Princeton, nearly half of all graduates eventually give back to the university. And,

  • because the average mid-career salary for Ivy League is more than $100,000, these contributions

  • are often huge sums of money.

  • What’s more, these institutions have a way of holding on to their money, despite their

  • seemingly high operating costs. They do this, is part, by spending only about 5 percent

  • of their annual endowment, investing the rest right back into the school. And unlike other

  • private institutions, their capital gains go untaxed.

  • But perhaps even more powerful than their large endowment is their pool of influential

  • alumni. Among them are powerful businesspeople like Warren Buffet and Amazon founder Jeff

  • Bezos, as well as UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon and 15 US Presidents. Harvard alone

  • has produced more than 150 nobel laureates, more than any other American university. This

  • is, in part, what makes an Ivy League degree is so valuable. The Ivy League name implies

  • a level of prestige that can lead to lucrative or otherwise successful careers. In fact,

  • the Department of Education reported that the median annual income for Ivy League graduates

  • after 10 years is more than double that of grads from all other higher-ed institutions.

  • But the benefits of an Ivy League degree are not accessible to all, or even most Americans.

  • Although these universities often describe themselves as melting pots, nearly half of

  • their students are white, and about the same proportion come from families in the wealthiest

  • four percent of Americans. While this is not, in any sense, diverse, it’s still a vast

  • improvement over the Ivy League’s long history of exclusivity. For instance, many of these

  • schools only started accepting women in the last few decades, like Columbia which began

  • in 1983. With the power to breed the next generation of world leaders, the Ivy League

  • is under more pressure than ever to reconsider who they let in and, perhaps more importantly,

  • who they leave out.

  • Ivy League school or not, learning can be incredibly hardespecially if youre

  • an overthinker. LEARN more about the science of learning in this video by DNews. Thanks

  • for watching TestTube News! Don’t forget to like and subscribe for new videos everyday.

U.S. President Barack Obama’s oldest daughter, Malia, will begin studying at Harvard University

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