The Ivy Coach Daily

February 11, 2022

Shame on Columbia School of General Studies

Shame on Columbia University for asking an inappropriate question of applicants to the School of General Studies (photo credit: Ptrdpictures).

We have long praised Columbia University for its commitment to America’s veterans. After all, there is no Ivy League university that offers admission to more veterans of America’s military each year than the Morningside Heights, New York-based institution — and this is something the school should be so very proud of. Through the Columbia University School of General Studies, the school touts enrolling more than 500 veterans each year and students graduate from SGS with a degree that reads Columbia University just like all undergraduates. Yet there’s a question on this year’s application to Columbia University’s School of General Studies that is entirely inappropriate. Curious what it is?

On the Columbia SGS application, there is a prompt that reads, “To what other colleges and universities are you applying? (Your answer will in no way influence the admissions decision.)” There are then four empty boxes in which applicants are to indicate up to four other universities to which they’re applying. That’s right. Columbia is asking applicants to identify for them the other universities to which they’ll be submitting applications. This, of course, is absolutely none of their business. And if the “answer will in no way influence the admissions decision,” then why oh why is the school asking the question?

This prompt on the Columbia SGS application has to go.

Just as we shamed the Duke University Fuqua School of Business a couple of years ago for asking a similar question on their MBA application, we shame Columbia University today for their entirely inappropriate question. Columbia SGS, eliminate the question. Delete it from the application. And do so today!

You are permitted to use (including the content of the Blog) for your personal, non-commercial use only. You must not copy, download, print, or otherwise distribute the content on our site without the prior written consent of Ivy Coach, Inc.


If you’re interested in Ivy Coach’s college counseling,
fill out our complimentary consultation form and we’ll be in touch.

Get Started