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The Ivy Coach Daily

June 25, 2012

Community Service and College Admission

Here’s something that Jeff Brenzel, the Dean of Admissions at Yale, once said: “We neither privilege nor ignore community service. The thing we are looking for outside the classroom is not a series of check boxes on a resume; we’re looking instead for a high level of engagement or leadership in whatever it is that the student cares about most.”

Read what Mr. Brenzel so wisely stated again. At Yale, like at all of the highly selective colleges, they’re looking not for a series of check boxes on a resume but rather a high level of commitment and leadership in an activity the student is passionate about. In fact, Mr. Brenzel goes on to say, “For some students, community service is at the forefront of their extracurriculars, in which case we pay a lot of attention to what they have accomplished in that area. For other students, some other passion or interest holds primary sway, and we evaluate the engagement in that area.”

So, no, community service is by no means a prerequisite to gaining admission to a highly selective college. And if anyone tells you otherwise — as they so often do — they’re wrong and you should ignore them accordingly. You have our permission.

While you’re here, check out this post on Ivy League Admission and Community Service.

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