Thick Application Files

College Apps, College Applications, Application Files

Don’t send Godiva chocolate to admissions offices. They’ll eat it if unopened. After all, Godiva chocolate is delicious. But don’t send it nonetheless.

There’s an old saying in highly selective college admissions, dating back to the days when not everything was electronic. That expression went as follows: “The thicker the file, the thicker the student.” Just because applications and such aren’t snail mailed into admissions offices anymore, that doesn’t mean the crux of the expression doesn’t still hold true. Because it sure does! Allow us to share with you a story. We received a delivery the other day. Deliveries are always fun. Who knows what’s inside the box? There’s such fun in the mystery.  But in this particular box that we received, there were photo albums, a childhood diorama (yes, you read that correctly — a diorama), pages and pages worth of awards on lined looseleaf paper, and a box of Godiva chocolate.

The chocolate was absolutely delicious. Some of the fruity ones were a little too sweet but, in general, we totally enjoyed the treat. Oh, and if you’re wondering, we had absolutely no clue who this box came from. It’s from the parent of a high schooler who is not a client but the parent apparently wanted us to get to know her daughter. And so, naturally, she sent us her childhood diorama. To be clear, we did not request said diorama nor did we request chocolate or childhood photos. We had no idea such a package would show up at our doorstep. And yet it did. And we ate the chocolate. But we haven’t got a clue as to why someone would send such a package. We were surprised not to find a lock of hair from the child’s first haircut. Perhaps that will come next. We can’t wait.

Would it surprise you to learn that there are actually people who send such things to admissions offices? There are actually people who inundate them with superfluous materials — with ridiculous things like childhood photos — in the hope that it will sway admissions officers to want to admit their child? There are folks who send chocolate, too, which can be considered a bribe! But, if unopened, that doesn’t mean admissions officers won’t eat the chocolate. We’re not sure as to why this parent sent us this package. But it’s quite unnecessary. Don’t send superfluous materials into admissions offices because “the thicker the file, the thicker the student.” Keep that file thin. If you can’t say something concisely, don’t say it with a childhood diorama. Oy vey.


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