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Obsessive Parents: What are the reasons parents obsess over the college admissions process?

NearlyDone2024NearlyDone2024 111 replies3 threads Junior Member
Obsessive Parents: What are the reasons parents obsess over the college admissions process?

You're on CollegeConfidential. You're checking out college rankings. You're hyper focused and determined that your child gets into the "right" college. If you can afford it. you're paying for a college admissions consultant to assist your child through the process. If this isn't an option, you are seeking out others for free advice.

Some of these same parents will downplay the importance of where a student goes to college, saying it's what they *do* at college that matters more. Yet secretly - or not so secretly - they obsess about which college *their* child will attend, focusing on prestige and name recognition. The decal on their SUV matters more to them than they are willing to admit.

If your a frequent CC parent, this may apply to you. Be honest with yourself.

What are some of the reasons for this fixation? I have some ideas. I'd be interested to see what others think.
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Replies to: Obsessive Parents: What are the reasons parents obsess over the college admissions process?

  • NearlyDone2024NearlyDone2024 111 replies3 threads Junior Member
    "The $75k price tag"
    That price is for the most expensive private colleges. There are less expensive options, both public and private (including starting at a community college) that aren't even considered. Why is that?
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  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 5555 replies93 threads Senior Member
    "The $75k price tag"
    That price is for the most expensive private colleges. There are less expensive options, both public and private (including starting at a community college) that aren't even considered. Why is that?

    Many students do consider (and attend) community colleges.

    One of the main issues with attending a community college first is that CC credits don't always transfer to the 4-year school (unless there is an articulation agreement), and transfer students generally receive less FA then they would have if they attended the 4 year school to start with (of course one would have to compare the full costs both ways, including potentially more than 2 years at the 4 year college in the case of credits not transferring).

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  • NearlyDone2024NearlyDone2024 111 replies3 threads Junior Member
    edited July 19
    "Many students do consider (and attend) community colleges.
    ----
    Close to zero on the CC parent forums I've seen. It's good for "others", but again, if we're being honest, most CC parents would never consider it for their own kids. It's a non-random group of parents on CC, I'll grant that.

    Regarding credits transferring, it depends, as you mentioned. The majority of colleges are happy to accept community college transfer students and their credits. The elite colleges? Not so much. That's by design.
    edited July 19
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  • NearlyDone2024NearlyDone2024 111 replies3 threads Junior Member
    edited July 19
    @helpingmom40
    CC is definitely helpful for parents who want to broaden their views and educate themselves. I'm glad your daughter found the right college for her. My daughter also had the "forge their own path" personality and wanted to be different in her college selection than her classmates. She's the first person from our high school to attend her chosen college for at least the past 5 years, maybe longer.
    edited July 19
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  • NJWrestlingmomNJWrestlingmom 1802 replies2 threads Senior Member
    Agree with @taverngirl . I love doing the research, so does my D21. We’re not looking at super elite schools, just trying to find her a school she’ll love that we can afford. She knows the final pick needs to fit the budget, whether it’s Harvard or Rutgers,

    CC is a small sample. My D goes to a top ranked public in our state, you’d be hard pressed to find a 2 bedroom condo in the town under $450k, Large Asian and Indian population that move to town just for the school system. We get a few dozen every year into the Ivies, UMich, UVA, Vanderbilt, etc. The top school every year, with about 50-60 going there out of a class of 450? Rutgers. A close second every year? Community college.
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  • NearlyDone2024NearlyDone2024 111 replies3 threads Junior Member
    edited July 19
    It's great to see such a diverse array of responses. That' s how we expand and grow.

    Not everyone who has an opinion starts a thread or makes a comments on threads. I'd wager that among these observers there are many who understand what I was touching upon with elitism and having a public opinion on a topic like community colleges while holding a decidedly different view in private. I admitted that the thread applies to me as much as others. Self-deception is often easy to recognize in others but far more difficult to recognize in ourselves.
    edited July 19
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  • Luckyjade2024Luckyjade2024 792 replies12 threads Member
    taverngirl wrote: »
    I wouldn't call myself obsessive, but my reason is I'm a research nut. When I'm interested in something, I dive deep and love to learn everything about it. The whole process to me was just fascinating. I helped develop my kids' college lists and went on visits with them. They decided where to apply and attend. I doubt either would've found most of those schools without my research. Their guidance counselor was pretty useless as far as putting together a list.

    you sound exactly like my mother...she researches everything! and loves it! She loved all the college visits, research etc. I really think she should do this for a living lol.

    she was supportive of every school I made and would have been happy for me no matter what I chose ..it wasn't about the "name"

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  • kbm770kbm770 156 replies2 threads Junior Member
    I grew up on/near college campuses and have always loved them. I loved my own college -- and grad school -- experiences, and I genuinely find it interesting and fun to go through this process with our high schoolers. Our older child is looking at LACs, the same kind of schools I explored, with an added bonus that I didn't have, of being able to go to college anywhere in the country. We love traveling (sigh) and enjoyed -- when it was allowed -- touring campuses and learning more about what these schools have to offer. We're not prestige-obsessed, just curious about what places are really like. It will be a completely different experience with our younger child, who wants things like D1 athletics and Greek life, about which I know nothing! I'll need this forum to have any idea where to start looking.
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