November started off with a bang. While the Dodgers were getting crushed by the Astros, many students were still editing and uploading essays to make an 11:59 p.m. Early deadline. Congratulations to all of them for surviving the experience! In about about six weeks, applicants will know heir fate.
The Application Process (Continued)
Earlier that day, I led a webinar as part of College Week Live‘s 12-hour virtual college fair. The message of my presentation, Standing Out in the Regular Decision Process, was that the Regular round can be quite competitive. However, students have the opportunity to polish their essays, do more proactively with social media, and firm up their college lists. In the end, each student always has a happy home.
Yet on Early Decision Day, nervous parents may have read “What Colleges Want in an Applicant (Everything)” in the New York Times. It stated, “Each year, the world-famous institutions reject thousands and thousands of students who could thrive there . . .A rejection isn’t really about you; it’s about a maddening mishmash of competing objectives.”
In the article, author Eric Hoover used Trinity College (Hartford, CT) as an example of an institution that has shifted its admissions process to evaluate along 13 categories, among them curiosity, empathy and ability to overcome adversity. Notably, Trinity has also gone test-optional.
Trinity values empathy and overcoming adversity.
Hoover mentioned changes at other colleges, including Olin College of Engineering (Needham, MA), which now asks selected candidates to come in for a weekend to be observed completing select tasks. He explained that mighty MIT allows applicants to share short videos and images in order to display their choice of projects. (@Eric Hoover, Why isn’t ZeeMee in your article?) The article concludes by citing Jon Boeckenstedt, DePaul University’s associate vice president for enrollment management and marketing, who believes “that it is the high-profile colleges that have the power to redefine the admissions process.”
Meanwhile, today was the last day of Senior Interview. If you’re the parent of a senior, quiz your son or daughter about their newfound knowledge, which hopefully they’ll have a chance to apply soon (e.g, in an alumni interview). This week, college counselor Cristiana Quinn published “6 Ways to Impress Your Interviewer,” which are:
Do your homework
Dress for success; manners matter
Have a plan
Demonstrate intellectual curiosity
Know what to ask
Close by thanking the interviewer and following up
Of course, these points apply to more than just interviewing. For example, our seniors have learned to show their intellectual curiosity in supplemental essays and to attach a link in their thank yous.
Tomorrow, November 4, is the next SAT, with another slated for December 2. You know the rules: Juniors should not take the test prematurely and seniors should not repeat the tests unnecessarily. The next ACT will take place on December 9.
In a bold and very welcome move, Columbia announced that it would no longer require applicants to submit standardized test scores through the testing agencies (i.e., College Board and ACT), sparing families yet another fee. Applicants instead will self-report their scores and send them to Columbia should they be admitted and choose to attend. A few days later, Colgate joined Columbia in the money-saving initiative, even allowing students to send a score report, which is downloadable. Hopefully others will follow their lead.
No more fees to send scores to Columbia. Is it the 5.8 percent admit rate?
A few years ago, my former college roommate told me, “Bard is the new Brown.” Move over, Bard. Town and Country now asks,”Is Georgetown the New Brown?”
According to the publication, “In August sisters Marie-Chantal of Greece (with husband Crown Prince Pavlos) and Alexandra Miller (with ex-husband Alexander von Furstenberg) headed to the capital to help their offspring—cousins Constantine-Alexios and Talita von Furstenberg—settle into their freshman dorms.”
Celebrity kids enjoy life at Georgetown.
The Wall Street Journal reports that Citadel’s CEO Kenneth Griffin will give $125 million to the University of Chicago. The gift, the second-largest in the university’s history, will fund faculty, an economics research incubator and financial aid for students.
Awards and Events
Brown, which now doubt will host many more celebrity kids in the future, is busy promoting what it calls the Brown Promise: a new financial aid policy that replaces loans with grants that don’t have to be repaid. According to new Dean of Admissions Logan Powell, “It’s the right thing to do for students, their families, and the future of Brown.”
The Scholastic Art & Writing Awards program is accepting submissions. Click here for more information.
National Portfolio Day, Sunday, November 12, NYC
It’ll be a chilly weekend. Don’t be left out in the cold; email me to schedule a call or meeting.