I’ve talked to two local high school PTOs this month about the “Am I Worthy?” mindset, treating admissions like a relationship, and the often-asked question “what do colleges want?” I needed to write out the full text of the speech for one group, so I thought I’d share it here.
Last week I gave a talk at a local P.T.O. meeting, explaining to a room of parents why the phrase "it looks good to colleges" is a red flag, what the "Am I worthy?" mindset is, and why it's a better idea to treat college admissions like a relationship. After the talk, a woman asked if I had any books I could recommend. Of course I do! Here are four, in no particular order.
My friend's daughter has already done a lot of thinking about school, and she's been smart about it: "she wants it to be relatively small, in an urban area, have great science facilities and opportunities to work directly with professors. She's thinking biology, likely pre-med, but also acknowledges that she might abandon that entirely when she gets to school in favor of something more like politics or public policy. If you ask her casually, she's pretty articulate about her thought process." So why did her daughter, when asked about her plans by a professional who wants to help her, just shrug and say "I don't know"?