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Tagged: College

National College Decision Day is almost here! Seniors, are you ready?

April 2nd, 2019

Seniors know that May 1st is designated as National College Decision Day: the deadline to submit an enrollment deposit to attend the university of one’s choice.  That’s right – after a long and thorough search process, seniors are down to roughly four weeks remaining to decide where they’ll spend the next four years of their lives. This is a very exciting time, yet it can also be stressful because there is a lot to consider.

In the article linked below from Forbes.com, the author, who is also a professor, lists four important things to consider when choosing a college.  Whether you are just beginning or a senior in the final phase of the college search, I hope today’s article will help you focus further on what is truly important to you in a school.

I look forward to hearing from seniors about choices very soon.

Article linked below from Forbes.com, published on February 19, 2016, by Chad Orzel

Four Important Things To Consider When Choosing A College

The college admissions process goes year-round these days, but the activity and the associated stress level peaks twice a year: once in the fall, when high-school students have to decide what schools they want to apply to, and again in late winter/early spring when those same students are forced to make a decision about what college to attend. The process and the pressure on students has intensified considerably since my high-school days back in the 1980’s (after the dinosaurs but before the giant armored sloths), and as a faculty member, I’ve talked to dozens of students (and parents) over the years who are going through the process, many of them teetering on the edge of panic.

Having gone through this a lot– this is my fifteenth year as a professor– I have a well-worn set of advice I give to anxious high-school seniors on campus visits. Having previously offered a bunch of academic advice in blog form– why small colleges are great for students planning to study science, what students should do to prepare for studying science in college, why non-science students need to take science, and why science students need to take non-science classes— I might as well offer some general advice on the choice of college.

Read more at Forbes >>

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Admission decisions: What to do when you are wait-listed

March 19th, 2019

The Ides of March, notorious for the demise of Julius Caesar, will now also be remembered for the unveiling of one of the most stupendous college admission scams of all time.  Many clients were in touch over the last week, sharing gratitude for collaboration that highlights ethical conduct and the life lesson that such work together provides students.  My heartfelt thanks go to each of you who took time to reach out.

The Ides of March also herald the final round of admission decisions.  Colleges are releasing Regular Decision results and by April 1 all decisions should be on the table.  While I hope there will be much cause for jubilation, this year has been inordinately competitive, and many students across the nation are receiving at least some disappointing news.  Please continue to keep me posted on what you’re hearing and thinking.

Today’s article link will help you know how to handle the most mystifying of colleges’ decisions:  the wait-list offer.  If you’ve been wait-listed by colleges that interest you, please take time to digest the article, take a deep breath and, whatever the ultimate admission outcomes, congratulate yourself for having put your best effort into the process. 

The strengths that each of you will bring to college are impressive, and an admission disappointment will not render them any less so.  Onward and upward!  My best wishes are with each student as admission decisions roll in.

Article referenced below on April 13, 2017 from US News, written by Jordan Friedman

BEING WAIT-LISTED FROM college can be disappointing for high schoolers applying to their dream schools.

Camila Alvarez was devastated when she was wait-listed by her first choice, George Washington University, last spring. She knew that for wait-listed applicants at many schools, the odds of getting in are slim.

But even after accepting her spot on the waitlist and submitting a deposit elsewhere, Alvarez didn’t give up. She updated the admissions office about her improved GPA and new leadership roles in clubs, and also had a phone interview. To her surprise, she got in by early June, says the current freshman.

The 91 ranked colleges that reported these data to U.S. News in an annual survey admitted anywhere from zero to 100 percent of wait-listed applicants. But the average was about 1 in 5, the data show.

Read more at US News >>

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Freshman files: Engineering state of mind

March 5th, 2019

Our second installment of freshman files for 2019 is here and it’s a great read for all students, especially those considering engineering, math and science majors.  Our blogger, Katelyn, is an engineering student at the Colorado School of Mines, a public research university that specializes in engineering and topics related to earth, energy and the environment.  

I’m grateful that Katelyn is willing to share her experience with us and I wish her the best as she finishes the year strong!   I especially appreciate Katelyn’s openness as she describes working through homesickness, developing strong connections to people and organizations on campus to overcome it.

My first semester has been really good for me! I joined Kappa Alpha Theta on campus and am also very involved with Navigators, a Christian ministry on campus. A junior who is in Navigators mentors me, and I really love getting to know her. I also sing with our worship team!

My classes are rigorous but not too overwhelming. My major is still Chemical Engineering, but I am very interested in possibly changing to Engineering Physics or Applied Math. Calculus 2 was my favorite class last semester because I loved the process of building skills and becoming good at things that I had never done before. This isn’t a surprise to me because I am finding that this rewarding way to approach math is the same way I approached singing and Latin, which I also loved. Yesterday was my first day of Calculus 3 and I was surprised at how much we have to do on computers computationally, but I have a sorority sister who is a TA for the class and she has told me that it will not be as hard as it seems right now. I am also taking Chemistry 2, Physics 2, and a class for the Honors Program called Innovation and Discovery in Engineering, Arts, and Science (IDEAS). Last semester I took Calculus 2, Chemistry 1, Physics 1, and the first half of IDEAS. The only course I would not recommend is IDEAS as it consists of many projects and assignments that do not relate to each other or to a major on campus. The class is designed to let students create art but, coming from a high school with strong liberal arts classes, I feel that I am spending a lot of time on assignments that are not making me a better person. It is quite time consuming and I personally tend to get frustrated when the projects are getting in the way of my STEM courses. That being said, there is no way for me to have foreseen not enjoying the class so I can’t say I could have done anything differently!

Moving away from home was exciting for a few weeks, but as September and October came I was missing my old life. … I missed my family and I missed being in high school. I think this was inevitable as I had met many people but had not yet had enough time to build real friendships. As I got more involved with Navigators, these issues went away and I was less homesick. I now look forward to my Bible study every Wednesday and usually have plans to go out with friends afterwards. Next year, I am going to live with three other girls who also do Navigators. I cannot express how grateful I am for Megan, the junior who has been mentoring me through Navigators. I look up to how hard she works in school and try to be like her in situations where I am not sure how to act. … She also mentors my roommate, who is also my best friend in college. I am going to try to get more involved with Theta this semester since I have spent most of my time with Navigators last semester.

I am excited for this semester, but more excited for semesters to come! I could not be more happy that I chose to attend Mines. I love my new life in Colorado but am so grateful for everyone at home who helped me get to this place today!

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Attention sophomores and juniors: Important college admission advice ahead

February 19th, 2019

What’s the most important document in your college application? 

You already know the answer – your transcript!  Colleges will review your course selection and rigor, in addition to your GPA, to ensure you’re prepared for college level classes. Course selection always entails a fine balance of challenge and manageability while continuing a strong and broad program of academic solids.  

Taking a difficult course load may look great on your transcript, but only if you’re able to excel.  Your teachers’ recommendations and your own intuition will help you decide on the degree of challenge you can manage effectively.  

We’ve linked to an article below from Yale University as it contains excellent guidance on course selection for all students, not just those applying to highly selective universities.  

 

In addition to choosing classes for next year, many of you are studying for the ACT or SAT.  It may seem like a daunting task but the winter months are a great time to prepare.  Juniors should all have a clear plan in place at this point for SAT or ACT test dates.  As both exams are now offered in the summer months, some students are now incorporating a summer test date into their overall testing plan.  A final note:  SAT Subject Tests remain important for a small number of colleges, so be sure to keep an eye on admission requirements for each college of interest.

Article referenced below from Yale University Admissions

Many high school sophomores and juniors (and their parents) want to know what courses to take to improve their chances for admission to Yale and other highly competitive colleges. With the caveat that every situation is different, here is some advice to help guide you as you make these decisions.

A Holistic Approach to Admissions

The high school transcript is almost always the most important document in a student’s application. But it is hard to conceive of a situation in which the appearance (or absence) of any one particular class on a transcript would determine the applicant’s outcome. The admissions committee does not make its decisions based on a piecemeal review of an applicant’s recommendations, test scores, activities, or individual elements of a high school transcript. It considers each application as a comprehensive picture of that student.

Read more at Yale's admissions site >>

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