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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How do I choose a college when I can’t visit the campus?

Although its difficult in the age of COVID to visit campuses, in no way should that diminish one’s effort to gain as much information as possible to make an effective decision when choosing a college from those which you’ve been admitted to diminish the risk of malinvestment.  Admitted students should use every virtual resource available from attending the special admitted…

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College Isn’t a Cure-All

Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic and Becky Frankiewicz writing for the Harvard Business Review (HBR) tackled the topic of higher education and full employment leaving out, for now, the idea of a lasting peace of mind. Of course, although there may be a multi-decade correlation between a college degree and three or less careers in one’s lifetime, equaling financial security, or as we…

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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),…

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Paying for College: Risk Versus Reward

The 1200% increase in college tuition over the last four decades, outpacing inflation by nearly 1000%, is Reason Number One parents often anxiously ask me about how their kid can apply for scholarships. As the conversation unfolds, many often also reveal having saved some for their children’s college expenses, though the amount is woefully inadequate, and are now looking for…

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College Admissions Isn’t a Game

Students and their parents worry, as is often the case in this springtime of year, about who will be admitted and/or rejected at what college, believing that the outcome of a meritocratic, formulaic decision making process that defines winners (those accepted) and losers (those denied) is the final arbiter of who succeeds in life and who doesn’t.   The quest to…

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Major Problems

In spring when high school juniors begin devising their lists of colleges in preparation for fall applications, panic can quickly arise, when asked the typical first question, “What do you want to study in college?” which to a teenager translates to: “I must choose a career, right now at seventeenish years old, sign my name in blood and risk sacrificing…

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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…

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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…

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College Tuition Increase = College Value Decrease?

For many higher education institutions, like the University of California (UC), the fiscal losses are growing as the health emergency extends, precipitating the need for a tuition increase. As reported in a December 12 Los Angeles Times article:  Systemwide, UC took a $2.7-billion financial hit between March and October — about 6.5% of its $41.6-billion operating budget, mainly from lost…

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College Tuition Discounts To Continue

Private universities discounted tuition in the form of merit scholarships and grants nearly 50% on average in the 2019-20 school year. Furthermore, tuition discounts for the 2020-21 school are forecasted to be 52.6% for full time, first year students, according to data from National Association of College and University Business Officers (NACUBO). And, in the current COVID-induced disruption of higher…

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The Downside of the Academic Meritocracy

The sentiments of a current second-year college student attending a public flagship university in California when reflecting on the perils of the academic meritocracy: Rewarding/punishing requires less effort [by faculty and students] though, making it the easier default [system for measuring academic performance]. Assigning expectations, whether positive or negative, is a low-effort path that leads to lots of power/authority [on…

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Income Inequality Continues to Expand

The difficulties for those in the younger generations to generate wealth are consequences of a structural shift in the U.S. economy in the last forty years, well before today’s late Boomer and Gen X parents entered the labor market as twenty-somethings. As highlighted in a recent Federal Reserve Bank research paper, “Market Power, Inequality, and Financial Instability”, Isabel Cairo &…

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The Next COVID Wave: Post-Thanksgiving Break?

Confirmed COVID cases are rising at different rates amongst the different regions in the United States and globally just as many college students will be released from their campuses at the Thanksgiving Break. As they begin traveling home, students may have to quarantine once again, just as they did to start the school year, but in their home states or…

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The Mental Health of the Young

March 13, 2020 is Gen Z’s “Day of Infamy”, when K-12 school campuses closed due to COVID-related health risks, sequestering an entire generation of youth in the midst of their coming of age. Amidst the sudden, and now ever-extending health emergency, precipitating continued distance learning and canceled extracurricular activities, the emotional toll on teens only exacerbates existing pressures.  But there…

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