Careful Consideration of College Selection to Compensate for Costs Incurred

To be ready to choose a college, I liberally estimate that a 17 year old high school senior has: Spent approximately 12,760 hours attending school since Pre-K,  Completed an estimated 2,376 hours of homework just during four years high school (assuming an average of three hours of homework on school days and six hours per weekend during the school year),…

Continue Reading

College Acceptances: the clouds will part and the sun will shine on a whole new day

Students who applied to colleges will now confront the need to grieve and celebrate simultaneously, as they receive admissions decisions. Acceptances eliciting an elation will be diminished by denials, which sometimes arrive on the same day, as well as by reactions to the success and failures of their peers.    In their grief over a denied admissions, students can desperately seek…

Continue Reading

Hunger-Admission-Games(LG).HC2016

To Wait or Not To Wait, That Is the Question

Waitlist offers—the no man’s land of college admissions, an offer for the B Team, a “we’ll call you, don’t call us”—hope and doubt all wrapped up in a single “Maybe”. Students, although navigating through the emotion of wondering why one wasn’t quite “good enough”, can still lobby for an offer of admissions. But, should they?  First, do you still want…

Continue Reading

College Grads Confronted by Diminished Employment Prospects

Many soon-to-be college graduates—in a time of economic upheaval and pandemic induced doubt—fatalistic and full of dread can relate to the most recent college student-produced meme.   Currently, unemployment and underemployment of new college grads is increasing, and gateways to employment like internships and other extracurricular activities are drying up or are suspended at closed or severely-restricted campuses resulting in fewer…

Continue Reading

FatEnvelope.CMC2014

Forecasts for Fall 2021 Admissions

Like everything else in our COVID-colored reality, Fall 2021 college admissions decisions will be historic. Let’s review how: Two-thirds of all US universities and colleges are not requiring SAT or ACT scores as part of applications, and some are not considering the SAT or ACT scores at all, implementing what’s known as “test-blind” admissions, for the first time in nearly…

Continue Reading

MIT’s COVID Application Questions

For Fall 2021, MIT admissions officers have added two optional questions to understand the context of a student’s current COVID-disrupted reality. During a recent conversation, an MIT admissions officer explained the intent of the two questions. For the first question: If there is anything we should know about your school’s grading system or course offerings, please use the space below.…

Continue Reading

Have SAT or ACT test scores become blind?

On September 1, 2020, a California Superior Court judge issued a preliminary injunction, to be finalized on September 29, 2020, barring the use of SAT and ACT scores in Fall 2021 University of California (UC) admissions evaluations. Essentially, the judge implemented a “test-blind” admissions policy, meaning SAT or ACT scores cannot be considered, even if submitted, in UC admissions for…

Continue Reading

Merit Scholarship Concerns

At some universities, SAT and ACT scores are used to award merit scholarships, in addition to being a metric for admissions. (Merit scholarships are awarded regardless of a student’s family’s financial status and based on an applicant’s qualifications, like GPA and SAT or ACT scores.) Many parents are concerned that their children will miss merit scholarship opportunities, if they do…

Continue Reading

The Enigma of the Local Context

For Fall 2021 first year applicants, earning the academic designation, Eligibility in the Local Context (ELC) for University of California (UC) admissions, may be more difficult than in past years. Given the Spring 2020 implementation of Pass/No Pass grading systems, thus the loss of a semester’s worth of letter grades for GPA calculations, Class of 2021 seniors’ GPA’s could be…

Continue Reading

Paradise Lost

Many are doing more with less, while living through the global, systemic retreat from “life as we knew it”, induced by a virus we cannot see. For some, though, doing the “same with less” is now their life’s maxim, having accepted substantial pay cuts to remain employed during the current economic upheaval.  As Megan Casella of Politco writes: Now, with…

Continue Reading

Put Down Your #2 Pencils: The University of California Eliminates SAT/ACT Scores…Sorta: Part 4

In a series of posts, I’m analyzing how University of California admissions officers will utilize the 14 Comprehensive Review factors to select incoming first year and transfer classes for Fall 2021, in light of SAT/ACT scores no longer being required for application. In the first post, I discussed GPA and grades, while in the second post, I wrote about how to craft…

Continue Reading

Princeton Suspends Early Action for Fall 2021

On June 18, 2020, Princeton University’s Dean of Admissions, Karen Richardson, temporarily suspended Princeton’s Single-Choice Early Action deadline for the Fall 2021 application cycle. All first year applicants will apply using a single deadline of January 1, 2021. Princeton is the first university in the U.S. to suspend the early admissions process for Fall 2021 admissions.  Princeton’s Dean Richardson explained…

Continue Reading

Navigating Fall 2021 College Admissions: Test-Optional Policies

Current high school juniors who will apply to colleges this Fall are anxious about amending their college plans, given the numerous cancelled SAT and ACT tests this spring, distance learning for the end of the spring semester, as well as not adding to their weighted GPAs as the academic progress of many is indicated with mandatory Pass/No Pass-style marks.  Additionally,…

Continue Reading