About 1,000 students are set to pull back the curtain on the inner workings of Stanford University’s notoriously strict admissions office after requesting their records be released under the federal Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).
The Fountain Hopper, a student-run email newsletter, urged its subscribers on Thursday to submit such requests with a step-by-step list of instructions, Palo Alto Online reports.
Under FERPA, the school must hand over documents within 45 days of receiving the request. One request submitted in October produced “confidential” evaluation essays written about a student by admissions officers and numerical scores assigned to their personal qualities, according to documents viewed by BuzzFeed News.
“It caused such a stir on campus,” said Tristan Navarro, a freshman student at Stanford.
Stanford admitted only 5 percent of around 40,000 applicants in 2014, BuzzFeed News reports.
"I could not speak about the Fountain Hopper in conjunction with this effort," University spokeswoman Lisa Lapin told Palo Alto Online. "They have simply shared a 40-year-old federal policy."
The Fountain Hopper said in a statement that they hope the documents expose Stanford University’s admissions process.
“We think that admission to a University such as Stanford is a process that is biased towards those that are in the know,” the publication told BuzzFeed News. “Everyone has a right to know what goes on in the black box.”