The Ivy Coach Daily

October 6, 2020

Enrollment at Ivy League Schools

Contrary to the words of a local Denver news outlet, the Ivy League admissions process isn’t going to be easier this year. Quite the contrary.

A core objective of this college admissions blog is to debunk misconceptions about the highly selective college admissions process — misconceptions perpetuated by the press, by admissions officers, by private college counselors, by school counselors, by fishermen, and by everyone in between. Recently, we came across a significant misconception about this year’s college admissions process in a piece up on ABC 7 Denver that left us scratching our heads. So what misconception was perpetuated by this local Denver news outlet?

Local News Station Argues Enrollment at Ivy League Schools Will Be Down

Well, let’s take their headline for starters: “With enrollment down, chances of getting into Ivy League schools increase.” It gets worse. As Alicia Nieves reports, “Getting into an Ivy League or top ten university is typically extremely competitive and difficult, but the effects of the pandemic may be making it easier for some to now get into their dream school. Part of the reason for this is that enrollment is down at college campuses across the country. One poll, conducted by College Reaction and Axios, shows roughly 22 percent of college students have decided to take a gap year. That equates to about 4 million fewer college students enrolled this academic year.”

But Ivy League Schools Are Facing No Enrollment Problem

Huh? Come again? We don’t anticipate enrollment being down next year at America’s highly selective colleges, including the top ten universities to which Ms. Nieves refers — not when the vast majority of applicants who apply don’t earn admission. On the contrary, those students in the Class of 2024 who opted to take gap years — they’ll be eating away slots from the Class of 2025, the very students applying this admissions cycle. You see, when those students opted to take gap years, the Ivy League and other highly selective universities filled their seats with waitlisted students. These schools aren’t suffering from the low enrollment figures that other, less selective institutions are facing this year. Not in the least.

Gap Year Students Will Fill Seats of Class of 2025, Making For a Tough Year

On the contrary to Ms. Nieves’ piece, we anticipate that this will be the toughest year in a very long time to earn admission to Ivy League and other highly selective universities across America — mostly because there will be fewer seats available to students applying this year since so many students from the Class of 2024 opted to take gap years due to the pandemic. So, in essence, everything about this article up on ABC 7 Denver — from its headline to the argument the reporter lays out — is misleading and/or grossly inaccurate. Oy vey is right.

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