The Era of the Disaffected

Gen Z and increasingly Millennials are disaffected. For many, the dystopian stories they consumed as kids, Percy Jackson & the Olympians, The Hunger Games, the Divergent series and the like, are now reality. Adherents of YOLO (You Only Live Once), Z’ers and Millennials often maintain a “winner take all and consequences be damned” attitude.  Their “Ok, Boomer” eye-rolling may be…

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Millennials Will Not Be Better Off Than Their Parents

For the first time in US history, the younger generation will not gain more wealth in their lifetime than their parents. As Scott Galloway points out, Millennials are the largest percentage of full time workers in the US, but economic growth has been slower than for their parents at the same age.  Furthermore, Millennials hold 31.4% of all student loan…

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Maybe…Letters of Continued Interest

There are three college admissions decisions: admit, deny, and the most confusing of all, Waitlist. Yet, students, choosing to remain on a waitlist by “opting-in” before the deadline posted in the admissions letter, should be sure they understand what the choice entails.  First, understand there is no guarantee that any students will be considered for admissions from the waitlist. But,…

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Advice about Test Optional/Test Free/Test Blind Admissions Policies

With test optional/test free/test blind admissions policies, applicants (and their families) are empowered with choice how to present a student’s unique qualifications for admissions. Yet, like with any choice, being informed to choose responsibly is essential.  First, as previously posted in What’s the difference between Test-Optional, Test-Blind, and Test-Free College Admissions Policies?, students must understand the difference between test optional,…

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More About College Admissions Decisions

Welcome to The Big Wait, the post-application period, with nothing to do but check applicant portals and wait for admissions officers to respond. High school students (some transfer admissions candidates too), anxious to “get done” with applications in the fall, expect to relax during the winter months, as “there’s no more college essays to stress over”. Unfortunately, that’s not always…

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All Ivy League Colleges Extend Test Optional Admissions for Fall 2023…and for a few, beyond 2023

For at least one more application cycle, all Ivy League applicants will once again consider if they can demonstrate their aptitude with a standardized test score. Yale and Princeton admissions officers recently announced maintaining test optional admissions policies through Fall 2023, joining the rest of the Ivy League colleges, although with varying timeframes for the extensions.  Admissions officers at Brown,…

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Reason #45,693 Why College Applicant Portals Are Important

The applicant portal is an online dashboard assigned to students by each college’s admissions officers to track their application, be notified of any missing information, possibly alerted to scholarships as well as likely most important to students: receive admissions decisions.  Typically, admissions decisions are sent through the applicant portals or email, fewer admissions officers send responses using US Postal Mail.…

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Common App

Can I change my 650 word Common Application Essay After Submitting It Once? Take Two

Yes, students can edit/update/revise/rewrite the 650 word Common Application essay after submitting an application to one (or more) colleges, as was discussed last Fall 2020.  Yet, once a 650 word Common Application essay is submitted, the copy is final for that college. A revised 650 word Common Application essay will only be reviewed by college admissions officers who receive the…

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So Goes Harvard…

As of December 16, 2021, Harvard is the latest college to join the chorus of admissions officers extending test optional/test-blind/test-free admissions policies for at least the next Fall 2023 application cycle and often beyond. (Longstanding Harvard Dean of Admissions and Financial Aid William R. Fitzsimmons announced extending test-optional admissions policies for the next four years through Fall 2026 admissions, impacting…

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Surprise! Hidden essays on the Common Application

Sometimes, on The Common Application, additional essay prompts will appear, depending on students’ answers to the campus specific questions. However, students are not forewarned about potential essay prompts. And, for many students, who complete the application, in the last days (or hours) before the application deadline, students can panic, when such “hidden” questions are revealed.  Two examples of “hidden” questions: …

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Back in School, But Not Quite Back to Normal

As the novelty of once again gathering in classrooms is waning, both students and teachers are waking to the not-quite-normal reality of what was previously predictable. For starters, only the Class of 2022 seniors experienced a full, non-COVID colored high school year, while Class of 2025 freshmen were seventh graders when last in full time, in person school.  Teachers are…

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Report Car

Pass/No Pass Grades and College Admissions

In response to the historic health crisis, many school district officials sent millions of students home with little or no planning for the continuity of their education. Thus, as they implemented Emergency Learning, hastily shifting whole schools from brick and mortar buildings to virtual settings, many also changed grading policies, seeking to relieve stress for students and their families.  In…

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LET THE COLLEGE FAIRS BEGIN!

As the season of college fairs, whether virtual or in person, commences, families should pause to craft a plan before the event. Reviewing the list of college admissions officers in attendance, then discriminately choosing which college representatives with whom to connect is prudent to maximize the benefit of the speed dating-like conditions of a college fair.   Students generally have 60-90…

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The New College Student Dilemma

Three tasks not likely a part of a standard College Move-In Checklist, yet are on every first year college student’s mind:  Establish new community (i.e. make new friends), and how do I make new friends in COVID-related restrictions? Adjust to new, constantly evolving academic expectations “What am I going to be when I grow up?” existential questions Second year students…

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