Do you think that a lot college admissions counselors are depressed?

<p>This is specifically for the ultra selective schools. Do you think they suffer from depression? Or at least question the morality of their job? For the Ivies and Stanford and other super selective schools, they basically get paid to break hearts. I mean, it's gotta hurt sending out 2000 acceptances and 30,000 rejections when a lot of these kids are pouring out the hearts into an application. I guess this brings it to a bigger question. Why do colleges pride themselves on low admissions rates? The elite colleges have the resources for more dorms and more teachers, so why accept so little instead of accepting more students? I hope it doesn't sound like I'm bitter. I'm not applying to any Ivy League or Stanford.</p>

<p>Oh for heavens sake! </p>

<p>These colleges have made a decision to keep their enrollments at a certain number. They do not want to grow larger. They have thousands and thousands of applicants for the limited seats they have in each freshman class.</p>

<p>This has absolutely nothing to do with the mental health of the admissions officers at the schools. </p>

<p>If you don’t get accepted at an elite school, that’s that. These schools are not a slam dunk for anyone…well…except a select few.</p>

<p>I can’t imagine why younare asking this question…not at all.</p>

<p>I suspect they can’t but help but be excited over each year’s crop of talented new admits.</p>

<p>I know someone who worked for a lower tier LAC as the head of admissions, and she didn’t really like her job. She thought she was asking parents to pay too much for the product (and in her particular situation, I have to agree). She ended up leaving that job and the field altogether. Her kids attended the state flagship where she moved after leaving the job (which was Michigan, so it was a strong flagship). But I think most admissions officers are happy with their jobs. I think the admissions officers at my kids’ colleges should be, those schools were worth the expenditure to us. I know that at D2’s college (hlghly ranked) they DO struggle with turning down qualified kids. But there are some good reasons that they don’t plan a huge expansion of the school size, too. </p>

<p>@thumper1 I’m just asking if you think it would take a toll on an admissions officer to reject so many people every day. I know that some medical fields (oncology) have high levels of depression because they deliver bad news so frequently, so I wondered if the same applied for admissions officers who deliver more bad news than good. Just a question.</p>

<p>I know some personally. They’re not depressed. They’re excited about the incoming class they’ve crafted and know the rejected kids will land at another great school - probably one that’s a better fit in the long run. </p>

<p>@Tperry1982‌ Thanks for the answer!</p>

<p>@intparent Did she feel like that specific school wasn’t worth the money? Or just private college in general are worth the money?</p>

<p>That specific school… and I am going to say that it is REALLY weird, I just got a banner ad for that school after I posted. I didn’t type the name, I only THOUGHT it, and I have never noticed an ad for it before. <em>creepy</em> </p>

<li><p>When my daughter called her admission’s counselor the day after he was admitted, he sounded like the happiest guy on earth. The instant she said her name, he said “Congratulations!” in a way that made me think his list of admittees was at the top of his mind. He did not sound depressed at all.</p></li>
<li><p>The comparison to medicine is not apt. Barring a mistake, when an oncologist delivers bad news, it’s the same bad news a patient would get anywhere. When most of the 30,000 get rejected from Harvard, the admission’s counselors know that those applicants will still end up at a very good school and a chance at an excellent life.</p></li>

<p>I can only speak from my tiny experience of reading applications as a student member of the application committee at the Columbia Architecture school many eons ago. We had a six point scale and every application got scored by three readers - two professors and one student. There was always a great feeling when someone was an obvious admit, and no qualms whatsover about putting people into the no pile. The maybes were more difficult, but since the way we did it, did not involve much discussion I always figured the other people on the team would tip that kid one way or another if I couldn’t decide. And if everyone said maybe they were probably going to end up somewhere else. I never had trouble sleeping.</p>

<p>If the admissions counselor actually had to sign each rejection letter maybe you’d get depressed, but since that all gets done by computers I don’t think it necessarily sinks in.</p>

<p>I would think the good news they deliver at least offsets the bad. The admission officers were at an admitted students function for my son’s school and they were the most popular people there!</p>

<p>What an interesting question. The college admissions officers that I know (I work for an Ivy but in computing, not in admissions) seem to really enjoy their jobs. I think they all feel excited about the classes they are putting together and given that most of the kids who apply really are qualified, know they will land on their feet and do well. </p>

<p>I was a Harvard interviewer for ten years and met lots of students I liked, but didn’t give my highest recommendation to. None of them got in. I would look them up later and they were always at schools like Amherst, U Chicago, and Duke. So they’re doing much better than OK!</p>

<p>I agree with JustOneDad. Nice response. (and similar other responses)</p>

<p>Piggybacking on Mathmom’s post, as a student reader on a doctorate admissions committee (three faculty, two students) I read about 20 -30 applications (we split the applications in half, there were about 55 in total) to admit 4,5 students. One or two were obviously talented and easy admits. Many more were obvious rejects. No one felt bad about denying these students because we knew they wouldn’t succeed in the program. Why invite students to fail? I had no problem rejecting the student for whom I write a letter of recommendation. He insisted when I first declined, saying I was just a doctorate student, not faculty. Turns out he only asked people on the admissions committee thinking it would help but the other writer was also a reluctant recommender.</p>

<p>There was one applicant we all discussed. She sounded bright, creative, inventive but she had poor scores and a vague research idea. We rejected her. Then she called the ccommittee head to ask about her rejection. He talked to her a bit and then asked if she wanted to interview in person. She accepted the invitation and we all met with her. She had a totally different research idea she was able to articulate clearly with enthusiasm. The committee accepted her. So that was one case where the committee made the “wrong” decision but the student/applicant was strong enough to convince us otherwise.</p>

<p>It was an interesting experience I’m glad I had. Never lost sleep because we rejected close to 90% of the applicants. We were looking to accept, not to reject, students.</p>

<p>@intparent‌, must be that new google telepathy app - I hear it’s in beta testing right now. :)</p>

<p>@CaliCash‌, I don’t think depression is the right word, but I bet at least some admissions officers feel a little pain for the ones on the bubble to whom they ultimately have to say no. Particularly if it’s someone the admissions officer has been advocating. I’m heavily involved in hiring at my company, and we typically get over a thousand applications for about 20 openings each year. And it really does hurt to say no to some of the people to whom we say no. But that’s counterbalanced by (1) the excitement over the people to whom we say yes and (2) the knowledge that the people to whom we say no are going to end up somewhere good. Not quite the same as college admissions, I recognize, but at least somewhat analagous.</p>


<em>chuckle</em> I’m waiting to walk into an Admin Building someday and see the sign reading “Office of Rejections—>”</p>

<p>I don’t lose sleep when I have an opening for one position and I have 10 people interview for the job. It’s simply my job to find the best person for my position; it’s nothing personal when I don’t extend a job offer to the others. I can’t imagine an adcom feels any differently. In any case, it’s not their job to “make as many people happy as possible” - there simply are only X number of seats and that’s that.</p>

<p>Regarding making the classes bigger - many schools are in cities/towns/locales where there are building restrictions, or cannot expand their footprint (and may not be able to expand height-wise either). They may be able to perhaps add a dorm every now and then, but it’s a major capital investment to do so - it’s not as simple as “buy 200 more beds, desks and drawers and poof, you can increase the size of your class by 200 students.” Increasing the size has tremendous implication for the entire infrastructure. </p>

<p>“Why do colleges pride themselves on low admissions rates?”</p>

<p>I don’t think they pride themselves on this. And it only counts for 1.5% of the USNWR so it’s not as though it’s hugely meaningful. I think they would rather spread their marketing efforts wider to capture the “diamonds in the rough” and if that means disappointing a few more kids, so be it … the tradeoff is worth it. And I agree with them. </p>