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Double Depositing is NOT a good idea

carolyncarolyn 7242 replies193 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 7,435 Senior Member
edited May 2012 in Parents Forum
It has come to my attention that some CC members here are giving the advice that it is "fine" to double-deposit, send two deposits in to different schools, and make up your mind later.

This is patently untrue. First, it is in direct violation of the standards set by the National Association of College Admissions Counselors - see http://www.nacacnet.org/NR/rdonlyres/32AC7935-7A99-40FE-A9C2-019AB11E498D/0/StudentsRtsNEW.pdf

Colleges and universities do check, and they do and will rescind admissions offers if they get wind of double depositing. This year, with waitlists larger than ever at some schools, I expect they will be looking more closely at double depositing issues and the risk of having an offer rescinded will rise accordingly.

Additionally, students must send in final transcripts from their high school to any college where they have agreed to attend. Many high schools will refuse to send double transcripts.

When you double deposit, you are, of course, holding a spot that could go to a waitlisted student. You are also adding to problems for next year's applicants. One of the reasons that waitlists have become so large this year is that colleges can no longer make accurate predictions about who will be there on the first day. So, double depositing my ultimately lead to even larger waitlists.

Finally, if this practice is widespread, it is likely that the deposits required by colleges for next year's crop of applicants will rise into the thousands of dollars, not a few hundred.

In short, this is a VERY bad idea. In spite of what you may read here where others are saying it is OK to do this, it is not. If you do decide to take this unethical route, then please do not advise others to also do so, and please be sure you can live with the potential consequence of having your offers rescinded at both schools.

If you, or your child, honestly need more time, call the schools in question and explain the situation and ask for an extension of a week or so. They may grant it, and it would be far preferrable to the ethics questions and risks of double depositing.
edited May 2012
221 replies
Post edited by carolyn on
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Replies to: Double Depositing is NOT a good idea

  • marycmaryc 155 replies1 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    Thank you, Carolyn, for your words of integrity.
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  • mardadmardad 1081 replies39 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,120 Senior Member
    Thank you, Carolyn, for the details. I saw that advice a couple of times on these threads, and it just didn't seem right.
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  • epiphanyepiphany 8404 replies170 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 8,574 Senior Member
    --and even without an ethics situation, or a financial concern (raising of deposits), the practice would be counter-intuitive from a legal standpoint, given the general principle of a financial commitment as an indication of intent to honor a contract.

    Between the choices of double-depositing & extended time, I agree with carolyn that colleges would much prefer the latter.

    It also seems to me that if a student continues to be "torn" between two virtual "equals," (after revisits), then the student's preferences are about evenly divided, and neither choice is a "bad" choice for that student. (So decide already; nothing cataclysmic is likely to happen at the school of enrollment.)
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  • JustaMomJustaMom 2644 replies94 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 2,738 Senior Member
    What also came up in the responsibility of the applicant is the need to contact the school(s) a student has been accepted to, but chooses NOT to attend, also by May 1st.

    This seems to be another area where many are misinformed.

    Thank you for posting this.
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  • anxiousmomanxiousmom 5783 replies105 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 5,888 Senior Member
    Right on, sister!!!!!
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  • asteriskeaasteriskea 938 replies272 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 1,210 Senior Member
    Thank you Carolyn! The admissions process is difficult enough as it is - double depositing is unethical. No matter how hard it is to make a choice it is necessary to do so - any other course of action is inherently dishonest and displays a gross lack of personal integrity.

    Your wise words are much appreciated!
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  • carolyncarolyn 7242 replies193 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 7,435 Senior Member
    I just hate to see mis-information being spread. This is another example of why you should do your own full research, that includes official sources, and not rely exclusively on the opinions of strangers here.
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  • macnycmacnyc 203 replies24 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 227 Junior Member
    I don't understand. Are you referring to housing deposits? Many schools recommend sending money to secure dorm space before April 1. This puts people in the position of having to reserve housing while still waiting to hear from other schools. But maybe this isn't what you're talking about. D is a junior and we haven't had to deal with this yet!
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  • sybbie719sybbie719 20644 replies1977 discussionsSuper Moderator Posts: 22,621 Super Moderator
    A housing deposit is not a admission or a depost used as intent to enroll. If you must send a housing deposit to hold a space (not unusual as many rolling admission schools offer housing on a first come first serve basis).

    It is a good idea to chech the policy with each school to ensure that you are indeed holding a spot for housing and not committing to attend. You also need to look at whether or not you can get a refund of you housing deposit and by what date will you need to contact the school.
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  • anxiousmomanxiousmom 5783 replies105 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 5,888 Senior Member
    Nope, Carolyn is talking about students accepting a place - and committing to enroll - at two different universities at the same time. Definitely immoral. Putting in housing deposits to more than one place is fine... some large public universities suggest you apply for housing even before you submit your application (UT Austin, being one of those....)
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  • xiggixiggi 24569 replies872 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 25,441 Senior Member

    "some large public universities suggest you apply for housing even before you submit your application (UT Austin, being one of those....)"

    And a nice source of income for UT since most applicants send their non-refundable housing deposits in September while many people end up not being accepted or decide not to enroll. This is one the most questionable and least understable practices coming from Austin.
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  • avwhavwh 125 replies1 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 126 Junior Member
    I thought most colleges didn't accept housing applications until/unless the SIR had been submitted.
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  • bookwormbookworm 8749 replies72 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 8,821 Senior Member
    NO, we had several schools that admitted S asked for housing ASAP. From others, we were told to spend (waste?) the money to secure better dorm. Fortunately, the $ wasn't too much. One was large state school, & to not hold a place in Honors dorm would have been foolish. This is not the same as holding 2 spots.
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  • lkf725lkf725 4597 replies184 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 4,781 Senior Member
    What about schools, such as Penn State, that suggest you send your deposit and offer a refund if you change your mind? Is that okay?
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  • newmassdadnewmassdad 3792 replies56 discussionsRegistered User Posts: 3,848 Senior Member
    It pains me to disagree with so many posters here, especially on an issue of "morality", but here goes.

    Some other families on these boards are truly torn in their decision. I think some folks just make matters worse for those families by putting double deposting in the "moral" category, and justifying it with the standards of the NACAC, as if all colleges pay attention to those standards anyway (I recall a few years ago that Harvard, for one, was in violation of such "standards" for over a year.)

    I would feel much better about this if colleges were to also pay attention to these standards, by, for example, receiving "factual and comprehensive information from colleges and universities about their admission, financial costs, aid opportunities, practices and packaging policies, and housing policies." When is the last time you saw "comprehensive information" regarding aid packaging?

    Legal obligation? Legal contract? Please, let an attorney speak up.

    As carolyn herself said, "I just hate to see mis-information being spread. This is another example of why you should do your own full research, that includes official sources, and not rely exclusively on the opinions of strangers here."

    So, those of you who are "official" moral sources, feel free to speak up. I for one am not an expert on morals, so I won't be so quick to condemn others who do what they feel they must in order to protect the well being of their own families.

    I too, believe in doing the right thing. But, I am not a member of NACAC, so their policies, guidelines and such don't mean a heck of a lot for me. For those that don't know, the NACAC is, in their own words, "The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), founded in 1937, is an organization of more than 9,000 professionals from around the world dedicated to serving students as they make choices about pursuing postsecondary education." In other words, they're like any other professional association. To think a professional association can promulgate standards that apply to nonmembers strikes me as strange (or in this case, rather political, and certainly working to serve the purposes of its collegiate members.)

    Look, this process is tough enough for parents. And colleges certainly don't seem to have the same moral compass when it comes to students. Too high a yield? Triple bunk, but keep the fees the same? Erroneous admits? recind. List classes in the catalog that are rarely, if ever, actually offered.
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