New COVID Related Questions on The Common App

In order for students to provide a complete and thorough summary of their achievements and qualifications for admissions, The Common Application added two new questions to the form. The Common Application is an online application utilized by almost 900 public and private universities across the US and internationally, which make applying to college more efficient for first year and transfer…

Continue Reading

The Early Admissions Arms Race

According to the Common Application, “around 860,000” applications were submitted on November 1, 2019 for Early Action, Early Decision and Regular Decision application deadlines, which for the first time, exceeded the “around 720,000” applications submitted last year on January 1 for traditional Regular Decision deadlines. The increasingly competitive nature of the college admissions process—evident in programs like Early Action/Decision that…

Continue Reading

University Of California Application – Activities & Awards Section

The University of California (UC) Application for Fall 2020 admissions includes many opportunities for applicants to explain the significance of their hours spent on the field, on the court, in a lab, on a stage, serving others, working in the mall…etc in the redesigned “Activities and Awards” section of the UC Application. In text boxes, which can include up to…

Continue Reading

Senior Year Warnings

“When reward is at its pinnacle, risk is near at hand.”   – John Bogle, legendary investor and founder of the Vanguard Group  Although written for investors, John Bogle’s sage advice is apropos for the next stage of The College Admissions Process during the senior year. Being exhausted from drafting college essays in order to submit college applications, a desire…

Continue Reading

Writer’s Block Defined

In the beginning of the writing process, many students writing college essays feel kinda like Spongebob, which can be the first in a series of writer’s blocks. Then, inspiration hits and writing happens, which creates hope…again, Spongebob: But then, seniors efforts may not seem to be enough, which is Writer’s Block #678,945,900. So the stress can build: But, the muddling…

Continue Reading

Our Fervent Wish

…is that every high school senior and transfer college applicant and their parents temporarily develop multiple hands, whose swift fingers dance with the wind across the keyboard to craft brilliant essays well before the deadline. Deadline approaching. pic.twitter.com/CszGLJyrA1 — Academia ɐɹnɔsqO (@AcademiaObscura) September 4, 2018  

Writer's Block Image

How Dr. Seuss Helps In Writing the “Perfect” College Essay

For all the college essay writers who believe that crafting their statements will be done in one (maybe two) drafts, take heed of  Dr. Seuss’ (AKA Ted Geisel) experience on the painstaking care author’s take while ushering, shaping, crafting and editing their story until just right.  From the Publishers’ Notes at the end of “What Pet Should I Get?”: Ted…

Continue Reading

Common Application Image

Can I Change My 650 Word Common Application Essay After Submitting It?

The short answer is yes…with an *.  [See Below] But, like any life-impacting decision, the short answer doesn’t account for the complexities of choosing a college.  And, those last three words are key to keep in mind:  YOU, the applicant, are the one who’s doing the choosing of the college.  However, most college applicants skip that fact and believe the college…

Continue Reading

NO SAT!?! NO ACT!?! UChicago’s Curve Ball

Testing is not the be-all and the end-all, said James G. Nondorf, U-Chicago’s dean of admissions and financial aid. He said he didn’t want “one little test score” to end up “scaring students off” who are otherwise qualified. From The Washington Post,  June 14, 2018 On June 14, 2018, the University of Chicago’s John W. Boyer, dean of the college,…

Continue Reading

College Application or Marriage Proposal?

Applying to college isn’t simple.  Metaphorically, choosing a college can be like an arranged marriage—parents are involved in the choosing process, lifelong expectations are being weighted and future prosperity is being forecasted. “Dowries” are paid in the form of tuition, room and board, books etc.   Students seek a college that’s the “right fit“, dating campuses on tour after tour…

Continue Reading

Only 2.43% Made the Cut

By definition, “highly selective college admissions” means more applicants denied than accepted. Harvard’s admissions results put the exclamation mark on the above statement. 98% or 40,003 people, a combination of “36,119 regular decision applicants, plus the 4,882 students deferred in the early action process” were denied admissions for Fall 2018. And, before assuming that applying Early Action gives a greater chance…

Continue Reading

JorenWater.CMC2018

A River Runs Through It

The late winter run-off from 12 years of school melting during the latter half of a high school senior year can create an emotional flood. A confluence of Senioritis and waiting for college admissions responses quickly overruns the levees built during a senior’s youth-limited life experience. Seniors decry, “When will I hear from colleges?” or “Many of my friends received…

Continue Reading