Early Admissions Offers Are Out; Don’t Believe Everything You Hear

Early admissions are out, which means the rumor mill is in full swing. Here are a few of those rumors, and how to deal with them.

Early admissions offers are out, which means the season for rumors is in full swing. Here are a few tall tales floating around among the country’s high school seniors (and their parents).

  • The kid with a 4.0 and 34 ACT score didn’t get admitted to the top school in her state. Everyone knows they don’t like our school.
  • It is harder to get into the University of Florida than Harvard.
  • The kid with the low SAT test score only got into that great Big 10 school because his mom knew someone at the university.
  • Colleges only want well-rounded students.
  • Only the leaders get into the good schools.

Most of this is nonsense.

Just because you are qualified does not guarantee admission to any school on your dream list. And what do you really know about the kid who had a low SAT test score? Perhaps you know nothing at all; perhaps he got all A’s throughout high school and took challenging classes. What if this boy put together a stellar application that included a package of genuine essays that showed some reflection?

What do you really know about that kid who says she has a 4.0 and 34 ACT and got rejected from your state’s top public university? You might not really know her GPA; she might have exaggerated. Did you see her ACT score, or did someone share the information with you?

Don’t believe everything you hear! Colleges want a well-rounded student body, not well-rounded students. They want leaders and followers. Colleges and universities do not discriminate against certain high schools. It is possible that a student with a super high GPA and test score was caught drinking a beer by police, got suspended or simply turned the application in after the deadline.

Marty O’Connell, the executive director for Colleges That Change Lives, offers great perspective on the rumor mill.

“Things are not always as they appear,” she said last spring during a conference in East Lansing. If she listened to every rumor, O’Connell might believe “no one is getting into college. It’s just not true.”

Kim Lifton is president of Wow Writing Workshop, which developed the first self-guided online tutorial for college application essay, Wow Online – College Essay, and also offers private consulting and essay review services.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Obviously, GP for Life is upset about something.
Pale Rider February 12, 2013 at 08:32 PM
""The kid with a 4.0 and 34 ACT score didn’t get admitted to the top school in her state." I am going to guess that kid was white..." I think it's great when European-American kids get screwed for the sake of "diversity" when it comes to college admissions. It gets them ready for the real world after college, especially if they plan on staying in Wayne County, MI. Keep voting for the candidate on the left, youngsters....It also explains why so many Arab-Americans claim to be of some other race than "white" and why they refer to European-Americans as "white" in order to draw a distinction between themselves and "white" people. Am I somehow racist for noticing this or for drawing this inference?
GP For Life February 12, 2013 at 08:37 PM
Debra, the very concept of delayed gratification is precisely what investment is. Investment takes place when an individual or firm forgoes current consumption for the purchase of goods or services to be used in the future to create wealth. In order for this to make any sort of sense, the present value of the incremental cash flows must be greater than the sum of cash outlays for the good or service, in this case a college education. If they don’t, writ large, you end up destroying economic value and making our nation worse off through the ignorant deployment of capital, not only fiscal but intellectual, as well. Thus, I reject your claim that people are focusing too narrowly on the short-term ROI. The very nature of a four-year investment of money and time does not lend itself to a short-term analysis. However, even in the long term and at the margin, a college education is still needs to add a significant amount of cash flow to get to a break-even ROI. If you add debt service costs, the hurdle becomes even harder to clear. I agree with you that college isn’t for everyone, the problem is, everyone thinks it’s for them. Couple this with the current economic condition of our country, which can’t support all the workers who want to work right now, let alone all the newly-minted college graduates and you have a real problem. Plus, the world needs ditch diggers too. Kim, I am not upset, but the kids after me will be...
Debra L. Van Buren February 13, 2013 at 09:31 PM
Delayed gratification refers to a long term analysis. You are missing my point 100%. Over time, the cost of obtaining a college education is a mere pittance compared to the actual ROI. Educating oneself does not necessarily have to be a cash cow, either. Moreover, education must remain a highly prioritized societal goal of our youth, in an effort to improve the economic condition of our country. Sure, we need ditch diggers, too, yet don't equate unemployment in our country with intelligence. Many college graduates are working today in fields other than their choice. The long term benefits of a college education always has, and probably always will, lend itself to a ROI that far exceeds the drop-out rate. I believe the economy is on the road to recovery, and those working in jobs below their capacity will be afforded new opportunities in the future. Economic value is enhanced, not destroyed, through the wise, NOT ignorant deployment of capital utilized by individuals to obtain an education. Newly-minted college graduates will no doubt overcome the challenges and hurdles they face in today's society, and their ROI will not be disputable. Think outside the box.
mucopurulent March 04, 2013 at 07:59 PM
My kids got full tuition and even a nice chunk towards room and board. Be aware that scholarships that go beyond tuition and books is taxable income, there are worse problems to have. GPAs were 3.9/>4.0, ACT 34/35, with 8 and 12 AP classes. No TV or game consoles at our house.


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