HomeArticlesColleges Bombarded by Explosion of Applications

Question. Everything I’ve read indicates that college applications have increased yet again this year? If this trend continues, I’m concerned that our9th grade son won’t have much choice for college. He’s a good student although not Harvard-bound.  – Parent, Centennial, CO

Answer. Applications to most colleges have exploded again this year and at the Ivies they became more competitive than ever. Harvard accepted a record-low 9.1% of it applicants for the Class of 2009. Last year’s figure was 10.3. The Harvard Dean of Admissions, William Fitzsimmons said, “It’s always hard to get in… but it seemed unusually tough this year. We finally had to take out a lot of people who were very good.” Princeton admitted 10.9 % of its applicants this year, while Stanford admitted just under 12%; Yale admitted 9.7. The numbers aren’t quite so dramatic at other schools but colleges like Northwestern, Colgate, Carleton and Pomona are in the teens and low 20%. This trend will likely continue because more students are going to college and because it’s become increasingly competitive, many apply to an increased numbers of schools, just to ensure acceptance.

Remind your son of the importance of maintaining an excellent academic record. College officials have identified the following as most important in college admissions:

  • Grades in college-prep courses
  • Standardized admission test scores
  • Grades in all courses
  • Class rank
  • Essay

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