JFK's Harvard and Princeton Applications Are IdenticalS

You know how, when you applied for college, you sent the same bromide "Why I want to go to _____ University" essay to every school, because all colleges are interchangeable anyway? Turns out John F. Kennedy thought so, too.

Last week, we celebrated the 50th anniversary of Kennedy's inauguration by looking at his unimpressive Harvard application. Today, Guest of a Guest's Ross Urken looked at the future president's equally unimpressive Princeton application. Here's why JFK wanted to go to Harvard:

The reasons that I have for wishing to go to Harvard are several. I feel that Harvard can give me a better background and a better liberal education than any other university. I have always wanted to go there, as I have felt that it is not just another college, but is a university with something definite to offer. Then too, I would like to go to the same college as my father. To be a "Harvard man" is an enviable distinction, and one that I sincerely hope I shall attain.

...and here's why he wanted to go to Princeton:

My desire to come to Princeton is prompted by a number of reasons. I feel that it can give me a better background and training than any other university, and can give me a true liberal education. Ever since I entered school, I have had the ambition to enter Princeton, and I sincerely hope I can reach my goal. I feel the environment of Princeton is second to none, and cannot but help having a good effect on me. To be a "Princeton Man" is indeed an enviable distinction.

Insincere college admissions essays: An American tradition since 1935. [GoaG, image via AP]


JFK's Unimpressive Harvard Application