Predicting Ivy League admission is quite easy for us at Ivy Coach. Are we always right? No. Are we usually right? You bet. After all, we’ve been working in highly selective college admissions for many years. We have a good sense of who is going to get into Harvard, who is going to get deferred Early Decision at Dartmouth, who is going to get into Princeton, and who doesn’t have the wildest chance of ever getting into Yale. We like to say that we have a crystal ball that can foresee your college admissions fate. In fact, Dartmouth’s newspaper, “The Dartmouth,” has even written about our famous crystal ball.
So when parents say something along these lines to us, we reference our crystal ball as it’s the best way that we know how to convey to them what we think: “I want my son to apply Early Decision to Penn. I know it’s an extreme reach for him but I don’t want him wondering his whole life if he could have gotten in. His best shot of getting into Penn is to apply Early Decision so we might as well have him apply and roll the dice. Right?” Wrong, wrong, wrong.
Our crystal ball can predict that this student with subpar grades and abysmal ACT scores doesn’t have any shot whatsoever of getting into Penn via Early Decision. And so we would advise this parent not to waste his Early Decision card on a school that isn’t going to admit him. After all, he only has one Early Decision card. Rather, he should use his card more wisely on a school that’s a reach — but not an extreme reach, not a ridiculous reach. He should use it on a school that might actually admit him. He shouldn’t use it on a school that 100% will admit him because then he’ll always wonder — like the parent suggested — if he could have gotten into a more highly selective college. But to use it on a college that is an extreme reach is just as preposterous. Listen to our crystal ball. Its readings are very accurate…
And as for the woman in the painting to the right, she is not an employee of Ivy Coach but she’s got a crystal ball just like us! And that’s some gown!