Apr 4, 2009

The Fallout

After listening to a week of neighborhood chatter about who go into which school and who was not so lucky, I think it's time to remind everyone that the process of college admissions is most definitely not a science. What goes on behind closed doors in the average college admissions office is much more akin to sausage making than scientific research, especially at higher "ranked" schools. To give you more of an idea how this looks from the inside, I am sharing an opinion piece that appeared this week in the LA Times, by the director of admission at Pitzer College in Claremont, California:


For those of you with an insatiable appetite for this kind of "insider" information, I would suggest reading The Gatekeepers, by Jacques Steinberg, an education writer for the NY Times. Steinberg spent nearly a year following the selection process at Wesleyan University, beginning in the fall of 1999. Admissions junkies, including those of us in the college counseling business, universally agree that this is "must" reading for the detailed and compelling material contained in this fascinating narrative.

Finally, I want to return to a more scholarly review of college admissions found in an article published by the Brookings Institute, entitled "Who Needs Harvard?":


The bottom line is that success is more determined by how hard you work than by where you went to school. Enough said.

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