View Full Version : Who's Who Among American HS Students and other scams

Mr. Blue Sky
11-18-2000, 04:04 PM
My (step)daughter is graduating in June and recently received an offer to buy the "Who's Who Among American High School Students". I tried to tell my wife that this book is just a vanity thing and is totally meaningless. How do I know? Back in 1980 I received the same offer. My parents could not afford the book (then $24.95). So, I didn't get one. A couple of my friends did order one and guess what? I wasn't in there! The letter stated that I would be included, but did not indicate that I HAD to buy the book in order to be included. A quick check showed that others in my class who were SUPPOSED to be in it, but didn't buy books, were NOT in it.

Any thoughts? Are YOU in it?

11-18-2000, 04:07 PM
I never bought the book either. I have no clue if I'm in it.
And I don't really care. Its not a great achievment or anything. Its fluff.


11-18-2000, 04:08 PM
I dunno if I am in it, I didnt buy the books, but I've kept the certs and I used it when I applied to college; still use it on job applications.

11-18-2000, 04:11 PM
Before I was promoted to a position without underlings (Which is actually a relief!!! Damn hourlies are a pain in the ass...it's like babysitting.), me and my co-managers would laugh at the people who put that crap on their resumes. I mean, if you have to pad it out with that "Who's Who" crap, you're just itching to be the butt of a joke. Ah, but I was fresh out of college and still wet behind the ears at one point too......

11-18-2000, 04:12 PM
I was in Who's Who. I don't recall buying it, though. Again, sounded good on college apps and things.

11-18-2000, 04:15 PM
my folks bought into it back in 1972 (funny I remember it costing about $32). yes, I was in it.

Until today, I've never bothered mentioning it to anyone.

My son got the same solicitation, when he was 15.

Mr. Blue Sky
11-18-2000, 04:18 PM
BTW, I DID send in the information card that came with the offer, but checked off the "I don't want a book" box. I found their website and here's a quote about the value of being listed:

Q. How much value do colleges place on this award?

The most important criteria in the college admissions process are: grade point average, class rank, leadership activities and achievement test scores; basically the same criteria organizations like ours, The National Honor Society and other programs use to honor students.
Nevertheless, we routinely survey colleges on their views about Who's Who. Here's what they say: 93% equate Who's Who with other honors and awards (5% are open admissions institutions with minimal entrance requirements) and 95% use Who's Who and The College Referral Service in their recruitment programs.

So, what does THIS tell you?

11-18-2000, 07:29 PM
My parents bought the thing. I was in it. I took it to school, and some kid in my algebra class who didn't buy the book asked if he could see if he was in it, since he had received a nomination. Sure enough, he was. Perhaps some people forgot to send the card back in.

Then my best friend was so jealous because she had received a nomination when she was in eighth grade (and was, therefore, ineligible) and did not ever receive one in high school. I wish she had told me that before. Obviously, our school did not have anything to do with nominating an eighth grader, so that's when we figured out that it really was a bunch of crap. I didn't bother mentioning it on college applications.

Oh, I was _re-nominated_ the next year. Didn't buy the book that time, so I have no idea if I'm in it or not. I can't even remember if I bothered to fill out the card again or not. But I was not re-nominated the year after that.

11-18-2000, 07:35 PM
I was entered all four years of hihgh school, I never bought the book, and I checked all four years and sure enough I was in there. I coudn't care less about it. I have never even told anyone about it. Whatever.


Fretful Porpentine
11-18-2000, 08:15 PM
Got the letter, figured it was a pathetically obvious scam, threw it away.

11-18-2000, 10:33 PM
I got nominated, sent in the card, didn't buy the book. Yes, I'm in there though. I did put it on my college applications and in my list of accomplishments in the yearbook but haven't used it since.


11-19-2000, 01:17 AM
I was nominated three times I think, and bought the book once. I was in it. Never mentioned it to anyone until now.

The scam I didn't fall for was the Josten's Class Ring. Myself and most of my friends thought them to be an ugly piece of shit that says you went to high school.

11-19-2000, 01:29 AM
Each year, all 24,000 public, private and parochial high schools are invited to nominate students who have achieved a "B" grade point average or better and demonstrated leadership in academics, athletics or extracurricular activities. In fact, 66% of those students selected for publication maintain an "A" average.
Approximately 20,000 high schools are represented by their outstanding students who were nominated by high school faculty members, bona fide youth organizations, scholarship programs, civic and service groups, and churches with educational activities and programs.

To insure that only qualified students are included in the publication, we do not accept self-nominations. Students who wish to be included in Who's Who must be recommended by either their high school, church, or sponsor of a youth organization which they have participated in as a high school student. Interested students should request that one of the above-mentioned sponsors submit a letter of recommendation on official letterhead verifying the student's qualifications. The sponsor must also include his or her name, signature and title, as well as the nominee's name and address.

From the website. http://eci-whoswho.com/

Not that I'm stating an opinion, just pointing it out.

11-19-2000, 06:41 AM
I was in it, but I never bought the book or any of the other stuff that was on offer (if memory serves they had a small catalogue of Who's Who personalised stuff). In fact, I had forgotten all about it until this post!

11-19-2000, 07:29 AM
Yes, I was in it too, and I never bought the incredibly over-priced book. I was also apparently in it for four years, which was a bit surprising because those four years were 8th, 9th, 10th and 12th grades (I didn't do 11th grade). Someone must have been putting in 8th graders.

11-19-2000, 08:29 AM
Yeah, it's a big scam. Reminds me of the "baby model" scam. My cousin, Terri, took her baby in to be photographed, like we all do. Shortly thereafter she got a letter from an "agent" who said he had seen the pictures and had been very impressed with how beautiful and photogenic her child was. He wrote that companies pay big dollars for baby models and he really thought her child was a prime candidate for this. "Please contact me so we can discuss this exciting opportunity." He wrote.

My cousin fell for it, and was convinced that her child was a star waiting to happen. (Even my aunt, who is much more skeptical than Terri, was convinced he was legit, because of course they all thought their baby WAS exceptionally beautiful.) My cousin was eventually suckered into going to one of his photographer "contacts" to set up a "portfolio."

To make a long story shorter, money spent: ~$700. Modeling jobs: 0.

After Terri's second child was born, she amazingly got the exact same letter a couple weeks after HE was photographed. Turns out the photographer was selling his client list to this "agent." He, of course, never saw any pictures.

11-19-2000, 02:23 PM
If you ever get an e-mail asking for you to reply in order to be put into a "Who's Who" directory, for the love of god, do not reply! It's nothing more than a spam list. I used to get this one dozens of times per day until I changed my e-mail address.

11-19-2000, 02:42 PM
I was in Who's Who... at least I sent in my card. Didn't order the book, and I've never even seen a copy of one so I don't even know what the format is let alone if I'm actually in it.

11-19-2000, 03:24 PM
A few months ago I received a similar offer (read: scam) in the mail. It was a notice informing me that I had been personally selected to appear in a "Who's Who" of Information Technology. Seemed like the same kind of thing that you guys are referring to here, (wanting me to buy a book, etc, etc). While I can see some kind of vague legitimacy in a book that collects names of good students, I have *no* idea where this outfit got my name from. Most likely, some BS mailing list I somehow got on. Pure scam. Oh well, carry on.

11-19-2000, 05:00 PM
I was in the college Who's Who (I think it's "Who's Who in American Universities and Colleges," to be somewhat precise). Yes, I sent my info back, and yes, I bought a copy... but jeez, did they fill my entry with typos! They completely mutilated the title of a play I was in, which I would think could be avoided via fact-checking and proof-reading. Lack of those things in publishing is extremely unprofessional, though I admit I didn't scan the entire book looking for other spelling and grammar mistakes.

I don't think it's a total scam, and I used to use it on grad school applications, but I doubt I'll be using it once my post-grad school, post-"job that put me through grad school" job hunt starts.

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