College Applications: Deferral Game Plan

More and more students apply early to college every year. It’s important to be prepared when notifications come out. A-List Education’s Director of Advising Natasha de Sherbinin has some advice on what to do if you are deferred:

  • Don’t take it personally: This process can be very stressful for families, but once you put together a strong application, it’s out of your hands. More students applied ED this year, so the selectivity continues to increase, making it harder to get into your top choice school. Give yourself a few days to calm down before diving into a back-up plan.
  • Write a letter: By early January, write a brief letter saying that this college is still your top choice, and you will attend if admitted. This is no longer a binding promise, but it is one thing they want to hear when they reevaluate applications in the regular decision pool.  Ask to have this letter added to your application. It can take up to two weeks to process, but you can always call the admissions office to confirm it’s now in your application.
  • Find your direct contact: Reach out to the admission counselor that covers your area. You could possibly even ask for feedback on what could be improved in your application. He/she may or may not be available, but it can’t hurt to ask.
  • Keep in touch with the university: Update them with any new grades or test scores. If you get an award or honor, that’s a good excuse to send a monthly update, which shows your interest is steadfast. You don’t have to over-contact an admission office, but if you have a reason to be in touch, it’s good to show you haven’t moved on to another school.
  • Consider ED2: Look to see if your second choice college offers ED2. ED2 applications are typically due January 1st and students receive an admissions decision in mid-February. If admitted, students must withdraw their other applications.

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