Income Inequality at Harvard

“As Justin Lanning ’12 noted in The Crimson last year, calculations based on information from the Harvard Financial Aid Office “come to the stunning conclusion that approximately 45.6 percent of Harvard undergraduates come from families with incomes above $200,000, placing them in the top 3.8 percent of American households.”  (the source).

As the new year starts at UCLA, I will be teaching first year students.  I don’t know what criteria these students met to be accepted.   What are the goals of the admissions office at leading universities?   Where did these “goals” come from?   What tradeoffs does the admissions office face?