What's Up with the Wait List?

It's too early for us to have hard data, but anecdotally our Client Managers are seeing universities make greater use of the wait list this year than ever before. Universities need to manage their "yield rate" as part of the admissions process. Most years, the process is straightforward. If XYZ College knows they have space for approximately 1000 first year students next year, and that historically about 20% of students accept an offer of admission, then basic algebra tells them they need to admit 5000 students to hit their number. This year is different. With so much uncertainty, XYZ College can't know yet what will happen to its yield. Family budgets are changing. Students may prove more r

Don't Be Like Most Students

"How did you spend your last two summers?" Stanford University traditionally asks that question, and other top schools ask variations. It's the type of question a student might expect to encounter at an interview, and for good reason. Exceptional students use their unstructured time wisely to develop new skills and reach out to others. "How did you spend the spring of 2020?" We do not know for sure how schools will adjust their applications in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic, but it will not surprise any of us in the admissions game when students will be asked to reflect upon this period of time. Right now, nobody can engage in the types of activities that used to be standard. Athletic

Standardized Tests and the Pandemic

The April ACT and May SAT tests have been canceled in response to the Coronavirus pandemic. Other test dates may soon follow. What should juniors do in the wake of these disruptions? 1) Keep Calm. Universities are as aware of what is going on as everybody else. Admissions offices will be forced to adjust some of their expectations in response. We are living through a rapidly-evolving situation, so we do not know exactly what form that response will take, but rest assured that nobody is going to have to explain on an application why their spring 2020 resume looks different from the "typical" student's spring resume in 2019 or 2018. 2) Plan as if Testing Will Proceed Normally Soon. The flip si

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