Issue 49: Why this Babson admissions fellow’s essay worked, plus new updates on fact-checking college apps
“Sometimes students write ‘I enjoyed my visit at Boston College,’ when they visited Babson. Do you really think that you’re going to persuade us?” admissions fellow and full scholarship student Dario Guerrero Jr. tells us his best piece of advice on getting into Babson and why he thinks his essay got him in.
Issue 48: Babson admissions fellow and full scholarship student’s shocking story, plus a letter from a reader about SATs
“My principal ended up calling me on my cell phone. No actually, called my house and was like, “Is Dario home?” to my mom. She got nervous because she felt bad that I missed school and thought I was in trouble.” Dario Guerrero, Jr., Babson College admissions fellow and full scholarship student, tells SocratesPost the filmworthy story of how he got in, the best types of students he recruits, and how he wants to be better.
Issue 47: Senior admissions counselor’s secret favorite essay topics, plus a loophole to get more financial aid
Best essay topics, best piece of advice, biggest misunderstandings, and the most important questions college applicants should be asking themselves. We continue the conversation with Karla Reigosa, “I had one student from India write about her parents showing her a video of Britney Spears, which was how her parents introduced her to moving to New York.”
“Some schools do foreign credential evaluations with third party offices, but I do foreign credential evaluations in-house for high school students. I get to figure out what is equivalent to a US high school diploma in this country or that country.” Karla Reigosa, senior admissions counselor, tells SocratesPost the ins and outs of getting into this top Florida university, including top advice for international applicants.
Issue 45: The one HS class you must take to succeed at CMU, plus top performers in Carnegie’s admissions office
“Don’t just ask the teachers to write your letter of recommendation where you got an A in the class; that’s not really helpful to me.” Carnegie admissions director answers Inna, Anushka, Sonia, Nancy, and Kyle’s questions. This week, SocratesPost and Deborah discuss the SAT adversity score, admissions training, and reader-submitted questions.
Issue 44: Hopes from a Carnegie Mellon admissions director, plus what happens when you eliminate test scores
“It used to be when I pulled up a student’s application, I would see how many times they interacted with us. I don’t see that anymore.” Carnegie Mellon admissions director tells SocratesPost about changes to the admissions process, the insider peek into the waitlist procedures, and the most memorable essay she read this year.
Issue 43: Truths About Northwestern That Even An Alum Didn’t Know, Plus An Admission Director’s Answers To Your Questions
In this week’s exclusive interview with a Northwestern admissions director, we chat about how he made quick and sound admissions decisions, the amount of time he spent on each application, the kinds of applicants made him do a double-take, the SAT diversity score, the effect of admissions interview reports, the truth about the admissions quota from specific schools, regions, or countries.
Issue 42: Our featured interview with a Northwestern admissions director and how NU managed its acceptance rate drop from 14% to 8% in 3 years
In part one of this interview, Northwestern admissions director Justin Clarke and I discuss his biggest wakeup call as an admissions director, how the dropping acceptance rate changed how admissions worked, how he teaches his staff to determine “fit,” what types of students don’t do well at Northwestern, and his personal experience at Northwestern.
Everyone talks about college, but what if you just want to be an artist and entrepreneur? Do you even need to go to college? This week, I talked to former UC Irvine admissions ambassador and professional dancer and fitness instructor, Shira Jackman, who shared insights on her journey from a top California public school to her Broadway career in NYC.
Issue 40: How this senior decided between McGill and USC, plus the inner workings of calculating class rigor among high schools
When Krishna, one of SocratesPost’s first readers, emailed me saying he had gotten into USC and decided to go, I knew I had to learn his story. During our interview, he shared his writing process, biggest difficulties, most helpful resources, and best advice for other applicants. He’s honest, humble, and grateful: his journey can give any USC-hopeful a sharp perspective on what it takes
Issue 39: How one of us got into USC, plus the true worthiness of selling yourself for a stellar resume
A super special exclusive: an interview with one of us! SocratesPost reader and senior at the International School of Lusaka in Zambia dishes on how he beat the college admissions mania this year to get into USC for mechanical engineering! In this never-before-published interview, Krishna divulges the college essay he wish he didn’t write, his most effective online resources for DIY college admissions, and how he upped his SAT score from 1210 to 1460. Aspiring engineers and international students will want to read this →
Duke interviewer, Ruturaj, discusses his tips on the admissions essay, what he wished he knew before attending Duke, the common personality types that attend Duke, and his secrets to getting in. Continue to read the final installment of our exclusive insider interview →
Issue 37: Duke admissions interviewer’s best and worst interviews, plus if 3 reasons to consider taking SAT subject tests
Rare insights from this Duke admissions interviewer. Ruturaj Kulkarni, a graduate of Duke’s business school, Fuqua, shares his admissions experience with SocratesPost. Read to learn how his interview questions diverge from the “standard” questions, what surprised him most about interviewing students, his best and worst encounters with applicants, what types of students impress him the most, and his take on campus culture. Any Duke hopefuls will want to read this one →
Issue 36: An admission officer’s little-known hack to getting scholarships, plus the truth behind paying in-state tuition as an international student
Jade, an admissions officer, got scholarships for college using a little-known hack. She tells us all the details in this week’s exclusive insider interview. Plus, a discussion about her best and worst encounters with prospective students and her best piece of advice on succeeding as a college student.
Issue 35: Get into this 4-year college with a 2.5 GPA and 19 ACT, plus an admissions dean’s best career takeaways
This public Alabama university accepts most applicants w/ an ACT 19+ and SAT of 990+ and GPA 2.5+, plus guaranteed full tuition scholarships and in-state tuition for anyone who exceed them. We interview admissions officer, Jade Chappell, on how ability to pay affects the admissions, the biggest misunderstandings of admissions, and the hilarious questions prospective students ask.
Issue 34: A Stanford insider’s inspiring story, plus an original report on this year’s waitlisted students
Stanford’s been on my mind lately. I recently read an op-ed in the Stanford Daily about recruiting prospective students, then learned that a family paid $6.5 million to get their daughter in. So I found and interviewed David, a Stanford freshman chemical engineering full scholarship student, who went from not speaking any English at age 9 and failing all his classes to getting admitted to Stanford on a full scholarship. He taught me how the “real” Stanford differs from what the media portrays, what it’s like to have friends who cry all the time at Stanford, why being “mega real” is crucial, and how his family feels about his admittance. His story blew me away and I think you’ll love it.
Admissions veteran Grant Cushman divulges to SocratesPost how race and money truly factor into getting into college. How do admissions officers know every applicant’s high school? Should students and parents be reaching out to their regional admissions reps to build a relationship? What exactly does an admissions committee look like? Continue reading the final installment of our exclusive insider interview with Grant.
He’s read over 30k admissions applications. How do admissions officers know when you’ve used a college consultant? How do you show commitment to an activity when you discovered it late in high school? How do admissions offices market and recruit students? What tools do they use to understand your high school context?
Concordia senior admissions counselor Linda tells SocratesPost her no-no essay topics, how involved parents should be in the app process, and how “gut feelings” play into college decisions.
This admissions insider is impressed by students with low test scores. Keep reading to learn her secrets behind the application rating system, and what she knew applicants knew about the app process. This week, SocratesPost scored an exclusive insider interview with private liberal arts college Concordia University’s senior admissions counselor, Linda Hernandez.
Issue 29: Apply to this college transcript-free, plus three approaches to extracurriculars if you live in a small town
Rutgers admissions officer talks to SocratesPost about how they read student applications, what essays stand out the most, and how their office handles disagreements on who gets in. We were surprised to learn that you can apply as early as freshman year of high school because transcripts are not required. Continue to read more surprises from Kia, an admissions officer at one of the top U.S. public universities →
Issue 28: Inside Rutgers Admissions & 4 Things Admissions Officers Look for In Your Extracurriculars
Do Rutgers admissions officers look at your social media? And more from Rutgers admissions insiders on gap years in high school, social media profiles, high school courses with an “expiration date,” and what takes longest in the application review process. SocratesPost’s exclusive interview covers the first half of Kia’s insider insights, straight from behind the admissions gates of top public university, Rutgers.
Reaching out to admissions officers if you’re having a hard time in high school. How financial aid affects an applicant’s admission chances. How interviews really play into the admission decision. Changes in the admissions field. The biggest misunderstanding about getting into Columbia. The backdoor to getting into Columbia. SocratesPost wraps up our conversation with Columbia College Chicago admissions officer, Margaret Jones, with her best piece of advice.
What college essays should entail, how to deal with hovering parents, typing out college essays on your cell phones, and the three red flags a candidate won’t succeed at Columbia. SocratesPost interviews admissions officer Margaret Jones of Columbia College this week for her exclusive insights on what’s behind the admission door.
Issue 25: Answers from Stanford, Boston College, and WUSTL admissions, plus how to explain gaps in high school transcripts
What to do with gaps in high school transcripts, the separate standards international students have to adhere to, the biggest surprises Soka applicants have about admissions, and Aaron’s take on the “secret back door” to getting into college. Plus, this selective liberal arts college admissions officer’s very best piece of advice for our subscribers. The latest exclusive insider interview is the final installment of our 4-part in-depth interview series with Soka University admissions officer Aaron Perry.
The biggest problem with teacher recommendations and how that influences admissions decisions. Name-dropping university staff in admissions essays. How thorough school research can trump a lower GPA. How leaves of absences during high school affect a student’s chances of getting in. Soka University admissions officer gives SocratesPost rare insights on the biggest questions we have. This week, we continue our in-depth conversation with Aaron. Plus, based on the suggestion of a reader, here’s a city profile on Aliso Viejo, California — home of Soka University.
Issue 23: What admissions officers really think about SATs and helicopter parents, plus what happened when we contacted Dartmouth for our weekly Q&A advice column
How admissions officers react when parents pretend to be their kids. A school that pays for their accepted students to fly to campus. And how admissions is more intuitive than calculated.
Issue 22: Inside the admissions office of a 450-person college, plus top 3 tips for college hopefuls from an executive presence coach
This 450-student college gives your application 40-minutes of attention. Every applicant makes it to the committee round. But most won’t get in. Soka University admissions officer Aaron Perry tells SocratesPost the inner workings of getting into Soka and the best questions he gets from applicants. After all, asking the right questions is oftentimes more important than getting all the answers right…
Issue 21: Is test optional truly optional? What to do with a medical leave in high school and your 3-minute summary of the top college admissions news this week
We got the scoop from this admissions officer of a top liberal arts college on how admissions officers view applications written by consultants. What clues give it away? Is test optional truly optional? What will college admissions look like in the future? His best piece of advice for college applicants and stories from his best and worst meetings with prospective students.
Issue 20: An admissions officer advises on how to best find fit and how two sentences can make or break your essay
What happens when a fight breaks out in the admissions office. What admissions officers prefer not to see. How much time they truly spend reading each application. What types of applicants impress them the most. The most memorable encounter with an applicant.
Issue 19: Why Whitman admissions officers disagree with each other on who gets in, plus who’s at greatest risk of underemployment
Why admissions officers are biased. Why “need aware” isn’t as scary as it sounds. What happens when admissions officers disagree. Why this campus prioritizes mental health over cutthroat academic rigor. How exactly applications are evaluated in each round. Whitman College admissions officer Henry Whipple gives SocratesPost the exclusive insider scoop on everything you wanted to know but never figured out.
Issue 18: Talk highly of yourself, but be humble, says Claremont McKenna College admissions interviewer
Fresh issue: a Claremont McKenna interviewers best and worst interview experiences with applicants, what’s changing in college admissions, the secrets to admissions, and the best advice for selective college hopefuls. Plus, a breakdown of what it means to be in your “element,” how to know you’re in it, and why a 1540 SAT doesn’t warrant a retake.
Positive personalities. Weeding out interviewees. How learning to cook is just as important as your college essay. This week, SocratesPost talks to Claremont McKenna admissions interviewer and healthcare consultant Tony Sidhom about being impressed by positive personalities and having the freedom to weed out bad candidates.
Independent consultant, University of Cambridge professor, and Princeton-educated economist Dr. Maurice Ewing continues sharing his experience as a Princeton admissions interviewer. This week, we talk about recommendation letters and Maurice’s thoughts on the secrets to getting in.
Getting into Princeton. The best Princeton interview ever. Problems with recommendation letters. How Princeton economics grads are recruited by big firms. In this week’s exclusive insider interview, Princeton admissions interviewer Dr. Maurice Ewing talks to SocratesPost about his views on elite college admissions, getting into Princeton, and what’s missing among those he interviews.
Anxiety amongst teenagers. Obsessions with dream schools. Transparency in acceptance rates. This week, we talk with Lynn U admissions director Freddy about the solutions to anxiety among high schoolers prepping for college, how interviews play a role in admissions, his most memorable encounters with applicants, and his best piece of advice for applicants.
Out with the old and in with the new. This private liberal arts college grants three-year Bachelor’s degrees and gives new iPads to all students. Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida aims to break the constraints of the traditional classroom. SocratesPost talked to its Associate Director of Admission, Freddy Glitman, who gave us the scoop on getting into Lynn.
How to spot “packaged” candidates in a crowd of applicants. Unfairness in the college admissions process. Changes in the admissions landscape. Biggest surprises for college applicants. Best piece of advice for Penn hopefuls. Get answers from Dave Min, Penn Wharton alumni, Penn admissions interviewer, UCI law professor, and congressional candidate, in this week’s latest insider interview.
UC Irvine law professor and admissions committee member David Min spoke with SocratesPost about interviewing candidates on behalf of his alma mater UPenn, an Ivy League university in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Dave has a widely varied career, including a run for Congress in 2016. Dave graduated from University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business and School of Arts and Sciences before…
We continue our conversation with Amanda, application reader and admissions counselor at Colorado School of Mines, and learn what she thinks are the secrets to college admissions. SocratesPost: Do you believe there are any secrets to the college admissions process? And if so, what are they?