I was recently provided a complementary copy of the novel, “Getting In” by Karen Stabiner. Now you might think that after spending all of my days helping students find the right college that I wouldn’t be in a rush to read a novel about college admissions. And you would be right. But, once I started reading, I found a wonderful book that may provide some insight for families considering the competitive college process.
The book follows five students and their parents during the senior year of high school. Three of the students attend a well endowed private school while two of them attend the local public school. The focus of the book is on the application and admissions process that each of the students goes through during this time.
Of course the focus of most of the students is on admittance to a handful of well known colleges but the twists and turns involved during the process are what make for a good read. The students come to realize as the year passes that having good grades and test scores is not enough at many colleges. There is also an underlying tension explored between what some of the students want from a college and what their parents want.
The story is told from the perspective of both students and their parents and is an easy read. The author has clearly been through this process herself as the emotions of the characters are spot on. There is humor, angst, joy, caution and every other emotion high school seniors and their parents go through.
I enjoyed the book and would recommend it in particular to families that have not yet gone through the selective college admissions process. It may give them some further insight into why it so so difficult to answer the question “will I get into X college”.