Columbia Combined Plan- Competitive Review

I recently transferred to West Chester University from a large state school after my freshman year 2018-2019. I transferred to this school because of the affordability, location, and also partly due to their 3+2 Combined Plan with Case Western, Penn State, Jefferson, and Columbia University for engineering. The school that interests me most in this program is Columbia but they recently updated their criteria so that students who began at any non-affiliate school in Fall 2018 or any school—affiliate or not—in Fall 2019 fall under “competitive review” instead of guaranteed admission. I JUST missed out. Due to the uncertainty it’s hard to say what my chances of getting in to Columbia are. It doesn’t hurt to apply after I finish up my “3” part at WCU, I just want to orient myself in the best way possible so I can get in to Columbia. Does anyone have a deeper understanding as to what “competitive review” looks like in terms of admission statistics (competitive review acceptance rate vs. general transfer acceptance rate, avg. GPA, campus activity participation, etc.)?

You can assume that it will have higher standards than the former GPA and grade standards listed for “guaranteed” admission.

Also, Columbia does not claim to “meet need” for 3+2 transfers, unlike for other transfers and frosh.

Certainly. The website says “An overall GPA of 3.30 or higher is highly recommended“

And I want to add that I’m primarily trying to get an idea of what the acceptance rate is for candidates with competitive review status. Can’t really find info on that.

As a 3-2 alum, the new procedures are to weedout some poorer students who would have made the bar in past guaranteed admissions (they began raising the bar each year until they scrapped the entire thing.) Many of my entering classmates were woefully prepared and failed courses and a few straight out dropped, which also corresponded with the quality of the initial “3” school.
Likely will begin to use the caliber of the initial “3” school as the major metric along with meeting 3.3’s or 3.5’s IMO from that school. For example, the Williams, Amherst, Wesleyan, Pomona, Claremont, Middlebury’s of their old affiliated list will be looked at more favorably (basically one of the top-20 national liberal arts schools).

My cohort was the last group to enter under the MOST LENIENT guaranteed admission guidelines 3.0 was all you needed with finished courses to be GUARANTEED admission. Was likely changed after my year because my entering cohort, along with the 2-3 years above me, effectively doubled the enrollment of the engineering school, the MechE/Civil departments doubled in size after the 3+2’s enrolled over those years likely prompting them to find ways to clamp down, and they’ve settled on doing away with guaranteed admissions 5 years later now.

Be stellar at your current “3” school, for a fighting chance, shoot 3.7+ or better. The honest truth is your “3” school is not one at the level of the aforementioned schools, so you are a little behind the 8 ball. But doesn’t mean your out, work hard and you have other “2” schools to consider as well so thats a plus, good luck!