So, you’ve just received your final college decision letter and now it’s time for you to make a decision. The results are in….you have either been admitted, wait-listed or denied at the schools in which you applied. So what’s your next step?
First of all, congratulations on your acceptances! You are headed to college! Now it’s time for you to evaluate your options and make a decision as to which college you think is the best fit for you. Unfortunately, you may have also been rejected from some of your top choices. I know getting rejected from schools you really love can be upsetting and disappointing, but you must try very hard not to take it too personally.
There are many reasons why students are denied admission. You have to realize that even the best students, with top scores and grades, leadership experience, and wonderful academic achievements are denied admission to schools all the time. Schools cannot admit everyone. Colleges consider different variables when constructing their Freshmen classes. They look at geographical and cultural diversity, unique talents, leadership qualities, special interests or passions, in addition to grades, test scores, and the application itself. There are many elements beyond the student’s control that can influence the final decision, like the overall competitiveness of the applicant pool for that particular year, specific institutional needs (which you can’t possibly know) and the percentage of students admitted. So, take some time to feel disappointed (ok – time’s up), then hold your head up and move on because now you have to focus on making your decision.
In addition to being admitted to or rejected from schools, chances are you may have also been wait-listed at a few schools. Current admission trends during the past few years have shown that more colleges are utilizing the wait-list to a higher degree because they are finding it more difficult to anticipate their enrollment and yield due to the steady increase in college applications.
Many students are not aware that there are things you can do to help increase your chances of coming off the wait-list, such as:
1. Decide if you want to pursue the wait-listed school – if so, send the admissions office an email to let them know that you’re still very interested in attending their school and to confirm that you want to remain on their wait-list. Ask where you are on the wait-list. Most decision letters will explain the process for remaining on the wait-list and things you can do.
2. Restate why their college or university is a good fit for you (perhaps your top choice) and include any new or recent achievements or honors.
3. Consider sending in an additional recommendation letter from someone who can share something different about your character, abilities, or passions.
4. In the meantime, make sure you don’t put all your eggs in one basket….send in a deposit to your second choice school by May 1 st to hold a spot. You don’t want to be left without a place to go come September. Keep in mind that most deposits are non-refundable should you decide to enroll at a different school.
5. Check in periodically with the admissions office to connect with a counselor about your status and to express your continued interest – but do not bother them every week!
Keep in mind that schools do vary in terms of how many students they take off their wait-list. And you may not hear a decision until late in the summer, so make sure you have accepted a spot at a different school. No matter where you go, you can do great things and get a great education.
If you find yourself in a bind or need some advice, don’t hesitate to call me! Best wishes always…..Connie