When writing college essays: be yourself, not plagued by doubt

Every year, high school seniors doubt that characterizing their experiences with rigorous honesty, exposing their human flaws or even a critique of their educational experience in their college application essays will garner them the acceptance they seek. They, instead, seek to rationalize contorting themselves into some glimmer or reflection of themselves in order to game admissions.  One senior last Fall…

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To Apply Early Or Not That Is The Question

“I’ll have a better chance of admission if I apply early, right?” is a popular question at this time of year, every year. Applicants, seeking any seeming advantage in the admissions process, believing the objective is winning a vaunted acceptance letter, can naively choose to apply during early admissions rounds.  Groomed since Pre-K, many current Gen Z’ers, like Millennials, many…

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For those applying to Yale for Fall 2022, Whether to Use the Coalition or Common Application Is Up to You

Fall 2022 Coalition Application applicants to Yale have the opportunity to submit a “Digital Upload”—an audio file, video, image, or document the student produced along with a short written description of the creation. However, Common Application applicants do not have a similar “Digital Upload” option.  Curious if the difference in the information submitted between the two applications may affect admissions…

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More About Test-Optional Admissions

We’ve abruptly and unequivocally changed the rules of college admissions for all expected-to-attend-college Gen Z’ers and, by extension, their parents, precipitating wide-ranging reactions. But, all reactions are underpinned by what one university administrator recently shared in a Maguire Associates survey:  “Students are confused by the various test requirements and second guess what we are really doing behind the curtain. There…

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News 93.1 KFBK interview with Jill Yoshikawa of Creative Marbles Consultancy

More about University of California Test Free Admissions

I recently talked with Aubrey Aquino of News Radio KFBK’s Morning Show about how the University of California’s (UC’s) test-free policy is impacting students through the Class of 2025 (current eighth graders) and potentially increases the subjectivity in admissions evaluations.  Take a listen: Browse our previous posts about how UC admissions staff evaluates students, as well as more about how…

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Quote: Steve Jobs

College Admissions In the Time of COVID

Recently, I spoke with families at the Sacramento Buddhist Church about the current state of education, particularly changes to the college admissions process as a result of the near holistic COVID-induced disruption. I’ve highlighted several issues in the following post, as well as included the full recording. Questions about widespread test-optional admissions dominated our conversation, as a multi-generational precedent in…

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Highly Selective Indeed

Throughout the Ivy League, possibly emboldened by test-optional admissions policies being one less barrier to entry, Fall 2021 applicants increased by double digits, adding subjectivity to the admission evaluation process and dropping admit rates year over year, some to record lows at Harvard, Columbia, Princeton, University of Pennsylvania.  Ivy League admit rates for the Classes of 2025: Harvard, 3.4% Columbia,…

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College Recruitment Rebooted or Refined

On-going cancellations of the SAT and ACT administrations has interrupted the traditional college admissions recruitment cycle, which may eventually affect demand for college.  Rick Clark, Director of Undergraduate Admissions at Georgia Tech, writes:  The mass cancellations and ensuing test-optional landslide has severely limited a big part of how colleges solicit applications through what we call “search.”…However, this traditional source of…

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All Ivy League Colleges Are Test Optional for Fall 2022

Since every Ivy League college—Yale, Princeton, Harvard, Brown, Columbia, Barnard*, Dartmouth, University of Pennsylvania, and Cornell—extended their test-optional policies to include Fall 2022 admissions, current high school Class of 2022 juniors will not be obligated to submit SAT or ACT scores with their application.  Given the sudden change to test-optional policies, applicants inevitably ask whether they should submit SAT/ACT scores…

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Is Fall 2021 University of California Applicant Increase Year Over Year Due to Change in SAT/ACT Policy?

According to a recent Los Angeles Times article, preliminary application counts for Fall 2021 released by the University of California show a 15% increase from last year’s Fall 2020 applications, netting nearly 250,000 single applications. Yet, will increases in applications render to more acceptances and more enrollment? Some speculate that the increase in applications is a consequence of newly implemented…

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See, Speak, Hear no evil monkeys

Beware of unmet expectations

The root cause of the financial crisis was purely human factor. This human factor is the completely false sense of omnipotence, self-importance and entitlement among the country’s elite, as well as the nurturing of these beliefs at Ivy League colleges and other elite universities the US will be doomed to suffer other calamities every bit the equal of the financial…

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Georgetown Application and Supplement deadline extended

Georgetown Extends Fall 2021 Applications

For students who’ve submitted Part 1 of the Georgetown Application, they can extend submission of their supplement application through January 13, 2021, extending their time to work on their essays. Why are a noticable number of universities extending their Fall 2021 Regular Decision deadlines, more than during a usual college application season? Specifically, are college admissions officers concerned about netting…

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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…

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Yale Declares Test-Optional Admissions for Fall 2021

On June 12, Yale University officials joined almost 200 universities which have suspended the requirement of SAT and ACT scores for Fall 2021 first year applicants. Like many other universities, Yale’s amended testing policy only applies for the 2020-21 admissions cycle. Yale officials reasoned: This one-year policy change reflects the extraordinary circumstances that students, families, and educators are currently facing. …

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