Among the eight Ivy League colleges, as Harvard and Dartmouth experienced application declines this admissions cycle, Yale applications rose 4.4%. The university is attributing the rise in applications to the efforts of the admissions office to reach out to low-income students. With 30,922 applications received this year compared to 29,611 last year, the rise isn’t extremely significant given year to year fluctuations. But Yale did experience what they are deeming significant gains in applications from low income zip codes that they explicitly targeted as well as from underrepresented minority applicants.
As stated in an article on Yale applications in “Bloomberg BusinessWeek,” “‘Some schools drive application counts higher by heavy solicitation of high school students, even if the students targeted are unlikely to be competitive for admission,’ [Dean of Undergraduate Admissions Jeremiah] Quinlan said in the statement. ‘Yale restrains its marketing efforts in an effort to focus attention on the most competitive potential applicants.'” And do you know what we have to say about that? Right! Sure, Yale may well be heavily recruiting low-income students and underrepresented minorities. Of course they are. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t also encouraging unqualified students from applying to Yale. They don’t “restrain” their marketing efforts. And Yale isn’t alone. Just about every highly selective college does the same. They are all guilty.
We are all about demystifying the highly selective college admissions process here at Ivy Coach. And that includes offering our two cents when deans of admission make statements that aren’t entirely accurate. We’re sure he had the best of intentions, but every highly selective college recruits students who don’t have a shot in the dark of getting in. And why’s that? More applications invariably means that the admission rate will be lower and that will boost a university’s “US News & World Report” ranking. It’s simple arithmetic, as President Clinton would point out.
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