College Admissions: Getting Realistic

By: Judi Robinovitz | Last Updated: December 21, 2013

Denied by a top-ranked college? Such colleges get thousands of applicants from students with good grades, good scores, and good extracurricular activities – but that isn't what they are looking for!

Unfortunately, you’re unlikely to be accepted to top-ranked colleges without some kind of a hook. Are you the best at something in the state? Are you a potential NCAA D-1 athlete? Is mom or dad a celebrity or major donor? Have you published your poetry or performed your music nationally? Or perhaps invented something? Doing independent research? Started a successful 501(c)(3)? Major influencer at your high school? Academic superstar?

Remember that top-ranked schools are tops for a reason. They see themselves as national and even global players, so those are the kinds of students they want to admit – the movers, shakers, and influencers. Nay-sayer? I’ve been called much worse, but it’s vital for you to understand how admission offices at the nation’s most selective colleges make their decisions. Yes, you should stretch to get into college – but realistically – or you will more likely be denied. So become a savvy shopper. If you’ve been denied in the early rounds by a top-ranked college, be sure to consider a range of colleges that aren’t quite as selective – of which there are many! And many positive decisions to follow! You can excel at many hundreds of institutions – and achieve your career dreams!

Many thanks to my fellow educational consultant, Marilee Jones, for inspiring this post.

Topics: College Admission Educational Consulting


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