This is March Madness. The last set of schools will soon announce who they accepted into their freshman class. With the game on the line, will you win the jump ball and be accepted at your best college fit? If so, oh the places you will go.

Do not ask others to “Chance Me”

Although it might feel good to hear someone tell you that you have an awesome chance to get into your dream school, consider the source. Realize your classmate, friend or neighbor probably has little to no idea of your actual chances for admission to a particular college.

College admissions is not a random process

Your admissions file typically gets assigned to a pair of readers, who collectively invest about 10-12 minutes to review you. That is why with the game on the line, those who have a solid plan that they execute well can maximize their chances of winning in the college admissions game. Coaching can absolutely make a difference for you.

Please do not get overly confident if you hear about someone accepted to a particular school last year with a certain GPA and test score. Does that mean if your profile is the same or better, you will get in? No.

If admissions were really that simple, colleges would only judge you on grades and test scores. Take a moment and recognize how colleges typically score you beyond your class rank and standardized testing.

The best applicants will be all-stars and their admissions file will clearly highlight why they fit the college they are applying to:

1. Admissions essays/interviews

  • Extraordinary well-told stories
  • Educate the reader about you

2. Transcript

  • Demonstrate academic rigor
  • Upward trend in grades

3. Activities

  • Passion
  • Talent
  • Leadership
  • Dedication

4. Recommenders

  • Positive ratings
  • Glowing reviews

5. Overall

  • Memorable
  • Likeable
  • Best Fit

You might not want to hear this. Realize you may not get accepted to a school and a classmate with a lower class rank than you may get in. Just like all schools are not the best fit for you, you may not be the best fit at all schools you apply to.

Colleges carefully build their freshman class. Schools seek to blend a class of passionate and talented young adults that will be good roommates. They strive to enroll even better students who will be active on campus and ultimately become the best alumni to well represent their school.

So if you do get accepted, be proud that your hard work paid off.

I think you will agree that Dr. Seuss said it best:
Congratulations!
Today is your day.
You’re off to Great Places!
You’re off and away!

Dave Best

Author Dave Best

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