The state of our schools is important to our health. Yes, its true that [Ivy League schools] are in a privileged position of receiving more applications than we have space,15.30532.simmons1.jpg but we cannot be safe or feel good in an environment where children in neighborhoods across this country do not have a chance at even a good basic education.

Ill tell you something about how I came into university life. I grew up at a time when this was a pretty terrible country from my perspective. Everything about it said that I was worth nothing, that I didnt matter, that I wasnt intelligent, that I was ugly, that Id never do anything in this life. I managed to have teachers who told me that I was smart and I could do things.