After navigating the stressful college or university application process, you might find yourself confined to the admission waitlist, making those hours of writing application essays and saving up for application fees hardly worth it. However, don’t be discouraged. Applying for college isn’t the time to sulk or sit around passively, awaiting the potential acceptance or rejection letter.
For some aspiring college students, being relegated to a college admission waitlist can be a nightmare realized. On a waitlist, your dream college feels just within reach while simultaneously feeling lightyears away.
When banished to their dream college’s waitlist, students will likely have dozens of seemingly unanswerable questions. If you’ve personally been waitlisted, you may notice yourself stuck in a constant thought loop, wondering how great your chances of securing admission are.
Now that you’re stuck in the waitlist limbo, should you cross your fingers, clasp onto your dream, and wait for the college to decide on your fate? Or should you simply move on to your back-up schools? Don’t take defeat lying down. Check out these tips to successfully get off the college admission waitlist.
Enroll at your second choice option
Whether you choose to stay on the waitlist or move on, enrolling at your second choice college is essential. Remember that once you join the waitlist, you’re in a dilemma where definite answers exist outside the realm of possibility. Because nothing’s for sure, you may suffer waitlist-related anxiety while you await a response.
You can expect one thing, however. Regardless of the institution, you will either be accepted or rejected based on its selection criteria. While you patiently wait for more information, you can figure out how to increase your odds of getting off the waitlist. Reputable websites like CollegeData can help you learn how to estimate your chances of getting accepted off a waitlist. Once you’ve calculated the likelihood of acceptance, you can devise a plan of ideal next steps.
Don’t get trapped in the waitlist
Although getting stuck in the college admission waitlist might feel like a rejection, don’t take their feedback personally. Similarly, any college student bound for success won’t stew in the maybes or what-ifs. They’ll take a proactive approach to their college admission and think of possible solutions as soon as possible. Some of the steps you can take to improve your odds of getting out of the situation include talking to your college counselor. You can also recruit an independent college specialist to help you deal with the current situation and develop an ideal course of action.
Reconsider your decision
Before reaching out to the school that waitlisted you, it’s essential to think over your decision. Do you still want to attend the college in question? However, if the school that has waitlisted you doesn’t express interest, you may need to write in to withdraw your name from the list officially. By so doing, you’ll open a slot for other students who wish to wait for acceptance.
If the college that waitlisted you is still your first choice, maintain your waitlist position, then implement the next steps.
Stay in touch
If you seriously want to attend the college that waitlisted you, keeping communication open is critical. In the past, schools often recommended waitlisted candidates to check in before the 1st of May. However, during these unprecedented times when schools have remained closed in response to CDC recommendations, it’s imperative to stay in touch with your top-choice college.
Maintaining communication via email or phone call demonstrates your interest and commitment to their institution. While you can’t visit the university campus in-person, it’s crucial to stay in contact with the admission representatives in a way that isn’t pushy or invasive.
Improve your grades
To secure admission to the college of your dreams, you’ll need to earn top grades during your senior year of high school. While it’s easy to catch a case of senioritis, maintain an optimistic attitude about your studies, and most importantly, study hard for AP tests and finals.
Considering these pointers can increase your odds of getting off the waiting list quickly. Don’t forget that admissions staff will factor in your academic and non-academic performance into their acceptance decisions.
While your senior-year performance can make or break your chances of admission, high school students are witnessing unprecedented times due to coronavirus’s impact. In response, a university administration will likely give students greater leeway in terms of grade-point average and extracurricular activity participation. Despite these courtesies, it’s crucial to maintain the momentum and focus on your current courses. Ensure you properly prepare for your AP exams, regardless of the situation. Excelling in the face of crises proves to your university of choice that you’re adaptable and resilient.
It’s always important to keep the college updated on the community-based initiatives, service projects, and passion projects you’ve been working on since submitting your application. If you’ve received any awards, standardized test scores, or academic accolades since applying, don’t hesitate to inform them of these updates. You can also submit an additional recommendation letter from a mentor or advisor, which can add value and new information to your application file.
Most importantly, ensure that whatever you’re sending is absolutely necessary to avoid overloading the admission office. You can consult your college counselor for more information on what to send and what not to send.
Don’t shut down in the face of rejection. Demonstrate your unfailing determination by requesting a spot on the waitlist. Any successful working professional will be willing to accept constructive feedback and implement the necessary changes. Use this waitlisting as an opportunity practice for the workforce, where you’re likely to be met with critique and rejection on more than one occasion.