Last night she and I drove down to Colorado Springs for a special workshop led by Trevor Donadt, an Admissions Officer at Tufts University in Boston. As you can imagine, we’ve been to a lot of college events and have a few more on our calendar. The goal of the workshop was not just to learn about Tufts (though we did), but also to have a better understanding of how the admissions process works.
This was one of the BEST college sessions I’ve ever attended! (Trevor would appreciate that exclamation point – sorry it’s not more than one, but that’s not my style :lol:).
Trevor walked us through six applicants in three phases and after each phase, we voted for two of the six we would admit. After each “round,” the votes almost always changed because you learned something new about the applicants. We started with GPA and test scores, moved to extracurriculars and passions, and then to family background and excerpts and comments from recommendation letters. Periodically Trevor would stop and ask us to support our choices with the data we had in front of us.
At the end he told us the results. One of the applicants with the highest GPA and test scores (and one that many people had voted to admit) was denied. Not even wait listed. But we could kind of see how they got there.
It was a fascinating process and really helped us understand how and why they look at everything. Grades are important, but they are definitely not the only thing.
He also talked about other things that affect how they review the applicant pool – if they want to encourage more local students to apply or have a hole in an area–athletics, the arts, languages, etc. These are things an applicant can’t know and has no control over.
It’s a lot like publishing. Publishers have to round out their lists–your book may be fantastic, but it may not fit their needs.My kids have or will experience what I experience all the time – submission, acceptance, rejection–except I have yet to have more than one publisher (college) interested in one of my books at the same time – dang! But maybe someday…