Walt, I can see why you added the caveat about the "-isms" at the end of
your message . . . From the point of view of an "out-of-towner," linking
"students come to college for all the wrong reasons" with minorities --
yep, it sounds a bit racist, although I believe that's not how you intended
it . . .

The behaviors your described . . disruptive . . . avoiding . . .
disrespectful . . . these won't cut it in life . . . so -- we educators
have some choices.  We can distance ourselves from the whole problem . . .
we can blame the problem on others, especially public education . . . we
can give up  . . . we can say it's someone else's problem to deal with . .
. or . . .

More to the point, I think it is fair to say that students, regardless of
race, etc., often come to college lacking some pretty important basic
skills, such as the ones you mentioned.
I don't think that necessrily means they're there for the wrong reasons.
To me, social skills, even motivation are learned skills, not gifts we are
born with.

And that's the challenge that we educators face.  We can say, sorry, that's
not my job . . . or we can say, okay, the way I was trained to do my job
(if I was trained to do my job) is not sufficient . . . I have to learn to
do more . . . sometimes stuff WAY beyond my original "job description."

I understand your feelings of disillusionment when a student says, I'm here
for the scholarship.  And I can't judge whether the scholarship is a good
idea.  Maybe there's an issue about what the scholarship means, or what the
ground rules of the game are.

Certainly, one question is, if the scholarship gets em in the door, then
what?  Is there a long-term, realistic plan for each learner?  Is there a
one-size-fits-all "program" meaningful to practically nobody? . . . You
said they weren't oriented . . . pretty chaotic -- sounds as if you've got
a job like trying to log a forest with an axe handle . . . if so, what
would you rather be doing?
                                Neal Steiger
                      NH Community Technical College
                        379 New Prescott Hill Road
                            Laconia NH  03246
                phone:  603-524-3207   fax: 603-524-8084
          "Even a planarian worm can learn."  --Eunice Cornish