Wait list

What to do when you get waitlisted

What to do when you get waitlisted

As regular admission decisions begin to go out, it’s time to think about what to do if the answer you get isn’t Yes or No, but Maybe.

First, let me say I’m sorry. Getting waitlisted sucks. In some ways a Maybe is worse than a No, because it keeps the suspense going and also starts to make logistical problems for you. Take a little time to be frustrated or angry or completely freaked out, but no more than a day or two. You’ve got to figure out what to do next.

The State of College Admissions

The State of College Admissions

The National Association for College Admissions Counseling, or NACAC, released its annual “State of College Admissions” report. The report is based on a survey of over 2,200 high school counselors and almost 500 college admissions officers. You can read the full report here. It’s worth at least browsing and checking out the charts. Here are my top take-aways for smart, ambitious college-bound high school students.

Two approaches to getting waitlisted

Two approaches to getting waitlisted

You finally heard back from the school you really want to attend, and they put you on the waitlist. First, let me acknowledge that getting waitlisted sucks. In some ways a straight-up No would feel better than a Maybe, because then you could just start accepting the No and move on. But a Maybe? It both gives you hope that there might be a Yes, but also makes you act as though it's a No. It stinks.

Last-minute decisions

Last-minute decisions

The deadline for most seniors to accept or decline most admissions offers is coming up soon--May 1. You may have already made that decision a while ago. If so, congratulations! (And thanks for continuing to read my blog!) But if you're still struggling to choose between two schools, or three schools, or seven schools or however many, then you may be looking for some help. 

Here are some more exercises to help you make that final decision, ordered from most serious to most arbitrary.

Two approaches to getting waitlisted

Two approaches to getting waitlisted

You can't refuse to make other plans hoping that you'll hear back from the school that waitlisted you. Depending on the college and the year (even if you look up their statistics from last year, they may be wildly different this year), your chances of hearing good news later are either slim, very slim, or maddeningly slim. You have to move on. 

Somewhere in your mind, though, you'll keep wondering what to do if it turns out you actually are one of the rare few who gets a spot later. Let's go over two different approaches to dealing with that possibility so it doesn't add anxiety to all your days between now and September.