Thursday, March 29, 2012

From NY Times.

From South Sudan to Yale
by Nichola D. Kristof

Paul Lorem epitomizes a blunt truth about the world: talent is universal, but opportunity is not.

Lorem, 21, is an orphan from a South Sudanese village with no electricity. His parents never went to school, and he grew up without adult supervision in a refugee camp. Now he’s a freshman at Yale University.

All around the world, remarkable young men and women are on edge because today they finally hear of admissions decisions from Yale and a number of other highly competitive universities. So a word of encouragement: No one ever faced longer odds than Paul Lorem, and he made it.

“How I got to Yale was pure luck, combined with lots of people helping me,” Lorem told me as we sat in a book-lined study on the Yale campus. “I had a lot of friends who maybe had almost the same ability as me, but, due to reasons I don’t really understand, they just couldn’t make it through. If there’s one thing I wish, it’s that they had more opportunity to get education.”

Lorem’s family comes from a line of cattle-herders in the southeastern part of South Sudan. The area is remote. Villagers live in thatch-roof huts, and there is no functioning school or health clinic. The nearest paved road is several days’ walk away.


  1. And yet American children struggle to read and write in college???

    1. Because America is a nation of fuckwhistles, Contemplative Cynic.

      A nation of absolute lazy, deadassed fuckwhistles.

  2. I remember when Manute Bol arrived in the US from the Sudan to attend college and play basketball at the University of Bridgeport (or maybe it was Southern Connecticut State was nearly 30 years ago).

    He was quoted as saying that Connecticut reminded him of the Sudan ...except for the trees..." (and the ethnic violence, disease, whatever....)


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