30 Years After Michelle Obama, Cultures at Princeton Still Clash

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Bryan Thomas for The Chronicle

John Parvin, a Princeton sophomore, writes a letter to his father in prison. 
Low-income students still experience culture shock on the elite campus.

Kevin Lopez grew up in Newark, N.J., but he had never thought of applying to Princeton University. In fact, he did not know it was in the same state, just an hour’s drive from his high school.

It was only after a summer program took the high-school junior and dozens of other low-income students to the campus that he realized that admission might be within his reach.

The story of Mr. Lopez—now a sophomore at Princeton—parallels that of Michelle Obama, whose