I was in New York last week touring a number of different colleges including Columbia University. Now I am sure you all know that Columbia is a great college and a member of the Ivy League. But what I really want to mention is a conversation that our tour group had with the Director of Admissions.
The director with the Personal Injury Lawyer stated that one of their biggest frustrations as a college was the number of applications that they receive from students who don’t really understand the college they are applying to. Columbia, for instance, is well known for their core curriculum which is a set of core courses required of all undergraduate students.
Despite this general knowledge, Columbia constantly receives applications from students talking about their desire to not have any required courses in their education. Not only does it waste the admissions officers time to review such applications, it wastes the time and money of the applicant who submitted such an application.
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The other issue that the director mentioned was the almost impossible task of picking a freshman class. Why is it so difficult? Because the majority of students that apply to Columbia are not only academically strong students but also extremely talented in many other areas. And most of them could be successful if they were admitted to the University.
But with an acceptance rate of less than 10%, many highly qualified students are being turned away for the simple reason that there is a limit on the number of new students that Columbia can accept. And of course this same problem exists at many other highly selective colleges.
If you are applying to Columbia, or one of the other highly selective colleges, you may not get accepted even if you have the grades, test scores and activities to be a successful student at the college. This is just the reality that we live in.
So what can you do if you are interested in such colleges? Go ahead and apply but make sure you know the colleges you are applying to and that they match your academic and social interests. And always, and I mean always, make sure that you are also applying to one of the hundreds of other wonderful colleges that a strong student would enjoy and be successful at.
When applying to colleges it is all about making sure that you have options come April of senior year. Do you have your options selected?