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Why Waitlisted?

ChloeliaChloelia 3 replies1 threads New Member
edited March 2012 in Prep School Cafe
I applied for the 2012 school year at a few schools, and of those I was waitlisted at 4 so far: Hotchkiss, Groton, Choate, and St. Paul's. I'm still waiting to hear from Andover and Deerfield, but I'm guessing that I'm waitlisted or rejected. The uniformity of the decisions has made me wonder if there is an underlying reason. I was hoping that someone could offer insight as to the possible causes and/or advice about how to proceed.

About me: I'm a caucasian girl applying for junior year, I have a weighted GPA of 4.57, PSATs in the 99%, seven years experience on flute and nine on piano and extensive experience in various ensembles (pit orchestra, band, flute chorus, chamber group, marching band, jazz band, etc.), sports including swimming and track, extensive community service, leadership, etc. As far as I know I have good recommendations- I sent in 6 and some were excellent, and generally I interviewed well. I have strong academics, including strong interest in science and high levels in 2 languages (French and Latin). I also have some unusual activities including martial arts, meditation, environmental activism/primitive skills, mentoring, and yoga. My family started the process late, but I completed my applications thoroughly and well, my essays were well-written and all the applications were in in time for the March 10th decision. Because I'm a sophomore, reapplying next year isn't really an option for me.

I need full financial aid and I have a younger sister also applying for the same schools (she was also waitlisted at all the same ones)- both of these might have been contributing factors. If any other students/parents have any advice or insight, or if there might be another reason for all these waitlists, I'd really appreciate the info! Thanks
edited March 2012
7 replies
Post edited by Chloelia on
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Replies to: Why Waitlisted?

  • mountainhikermountainhiker 745 replies66 threads Member
    You sound like a wonderful young woman, and I’m sorry you received such disappointing news.

    No, you did not do anything wrong. The competition is unbelievably fierce for these schools, and hundreds (sometimes thousands!) of students are applying for a very limited number of places. Applying for entry junior year is also very tough - there are significantly less students accepted as juniors then as sophomores, sometimes only a handful of kids.

    Needing full financial aid also puts you in an even more competitive situation. Many schools try to increase the impact of their financial aid budget by funding more students with partial scholarships, instead of a smaller number of students with full scholarships.
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  • ChloeliaChloelia 3 replies1 threads New Member
    Update: I just got letters from both Andover and Deerfield- I was waitlisted at both, bringing my total up to 6 waitlists (!) Thanks for your input, mountainhiker.
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  • GMTplus7GMTplus7 14268 replies297 threads Senior Member
    from my response to another thread:

    "these schools have painfully competitive admit rates--Andover, for example, is 14%. That means they only pick one in 7 applicants, and the applicants are a high caliber bunch.

    Even if you roll a die, you have a better probability of getting a particular outcome."

    In you & your sister's case, you both have to roll the die and end up with the same number AND both be awarded full FA.
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  • CherryRoseCherryRose 279 replies4 threads Junior Member
    "I need full financial aid"

    Sorry, sister, but that was probably the tiebreaker. I needed full FA as well- and maybe my ethnicity played a part- but I was waitlisted everywhere but one (rejected). "Being Asian and applying for FA is like climbing Mount Everest in bare feet and without an oxygen tank", it was said on the main forum recently. So in your case, maybe, "climbing Mount Everest without an oxygen tank". :D
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  • kaflookeykaflookey 43 replies0 threads Junior Member
    I think that you sound like a great candidate, but applying only to the very very most competitive schools was extremely risky, especially needing full FA.
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  • athena102athena102 15 replies0 threads New Member
    Financial Aid shouldn't have been a problem at Hotchkiss. It might just be because they only accept maybe around ten students. It's just too competitive. I'm sorry. I hope you find a suitable alternative.
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  • honeybee63honeybee63 581 replies11 threads Member
    Chloelia, you may get more feedback posting your query on the main thread, although the consensus really seems to be that selectivity of those schools plus needing FA creates odds that are astronomically against you. Here's some wisdom that was shared with me by a parent on these boards who knows whereof he speaks: <<the last few years have hit applicants hard because boarding schools took huge hits to their endowments when the economy tanked. Because tuition covers only part of the true cost - and the balance is made up by donations and draws from the endowments, the schools have had to stop being need blind. There just isn't enough money to go around to all the families that need it. Worse - the assumption used to be that full pay families were expected to remain full pay families - but if someone is suddenly thrust out of work, or the stock market erodes their financial base - those families are now asking for aid as well. In fact, one local school saw a number of withdrawals as full pay families suddenly realized they couldn't support the tuition anymore and the schools weren't in a position to help with financial aid. So they sent their children to local suburban public schools.>> None of it is much of a consolation except the value of the entire process as a life experience (pretty priceless IMHO) and the fact that you are on a lot of WL's - so truly, it ain't over till it's over!
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