Honors College Decisions Posted

Son got a decision to waitlist. This will take Ole MIss off the table, as they don’t notify you if you are off the waitlist for SMBHC until after May 1st. He has other offers that include honors and other benefits, so moving on.

Good luck to everyone else!

I’m sorry to hear he was waitlisted. His stats were better than my son’s. (Who didn’t meet the EA deadline.) Makes me a bit concerned for him.

My3Kiddows - it’s a holistic entry. My son has really strong academic stats, but his ECs are relatively weak compared to others. He has not had any leadership roles, and he didn’t have a lot of clubs and other activities. He is a 4 year varsity athlete in a sport that runs for 5 months, he worked weekends and full time during the summer, so his other types of activities were limited. They seem to be looking for social movers and shakers, and that’s just not my kid. He has some other really wonderful options, so truly this just served to eliminate a school from his list. He didn’t take it personally. He just wasn’t a fit for what they wanted for their program.

But on a brighter note, he did get accepted to Tulane today with a nice merit scholarship.

@elodyCOH - I wanted to follow up and let you know that my DS was also waitlisted. I had told my DH that I didn’t think he’d get in, but DH was surprised at the waitlist notification. At one point I had Googled more info about the Honors College and came up with an article about the very low - 50% - retention rate in the college. The dean wanted to change that an increase it to 80%. The number 1 factor was GPA. Lots of students had a hard time maintaining a 3.5. (Given that they use a +/- scale and an A- is a 3.7, I can’t say I’m surprised. But it was new info to me.) Given that DS has roughly a 3.6UW GPA, I realized that his impressive ECs wasn’t going to overcome that deficit and that he wouldn’t get in.

It was a blow. After interviewing for CME, he had decided this was his top choice and he wanted the perks that come with being in Honors. He won’t hear from CME for a couple more weeks (which is frustrating since freshman orientation registration opens up on Monday and we don’t want to pay if he’s not going). At this point I don’t think things bode well for CME acceptance.

He has two other solid offers that include merit aid. One of those also includes University Honors Program and an invitation to do a special 5 year program to earn B.S. Engineering + MS in a science discipline or MBA. I figure my job is now to talk about what great choices those are and get him excited about them.

@My3Kiddos I’m sorry about the waitlist. I hope he gets good news on the CME.

My son’s unweighted was around 3.7, with 13 APs taken in HS, plus 3 dual enrollment classes that he took at University of Alabama (he has a 4.0 average with the classes he took at Alabama). I think for my son it may have been his essay subject matter that did it. I’d heard from others that they were looking for kids who wrote about social issues. Mine wrote sort of an abstract theoretical essay that likely missed the mark for what they are looking for. Nearly all the kids they do pick are social activists of some sort also. My kid just didn’t portray himself in that way.

We scratched Ole Miss off the list. He is seriously looking at Alabama. He is in the Honors College there, and got word that he was accepted to the Blount Scholars program. He got excellent scholarship money, so I think he’s close to making a decision. Tulane was just too seriously expensive for us to consider at this point. His other choice is Mississippi State - he has nearly a full ride scholarship there - we were very impressed with their programs and honors college.

@elodyCOH - Good luck to your son reaching a decision. Sounds like he’s got some good options as well! It’s interesting that you say they’re looking for social activists. That would not be my DS. He has a lot of mentorship and leadership experience, but it’s not in the social activism realm. I still think his grades were likely an issue. He’s one of those kids that prefers to maximize his time on ECs instead of getting an extra 5 points on an exam and is perfectly content with a B if it means he’s been able to create a new something for the robotics team. He’s very interested in co-op programs, but DH and I are concerned that he’ll get a c0-op job he loves and not want to go back to school!

The Honors College in no way only accepts nor looks for kids who write their essay on social justice issues.It is fine if they do but not an advantage. My daughter is a far right republican that is an HC member. It is very competive to get in and stay in. I like it that way. We are out of state, DD scored 33 on ACT with 4.88 weighted and 3.97 unweighted with 12 AP courses.
The average admitted student has around 3.96 unweighted and 31.5 ACT.
My daughter has absolutely loved OM/SMBHC and feels challenged everyday. She says the mix of conservative/liberal is close to equal which makes for healthy debate. It is highly regarded and ranked in the top HC’s nationally. The 6 figure merit aid she received was icing on the cake.
I would highly recommend the SMBHC!

I find it interesting that the University of Mississippi reports that just 55% of the undergraduates are state residents / from in-state.

uncletupelo - We heard that they have changed drastically in the last two years with a new director. My son’s academic stats were very high also - he was accepted to some other highly competitive schools and programs. I truly think his essay was his downfall. Activist type kids can be any political mettle - but they are looking for that particular type of kid, I think. My kid is not like that - he leans heavily towards science, not towards the social side of any of it. I’ve been talking about this with others, and there is a CC member who talked with a member of the HC admissions committee and they did say they are looking for a particular type for admission - not just academics. They are looking for world changers. My son would be doing that from a lab somewhere - and that wasn’t what they wanted.

For what it’s worth - my son had a 34 ACT, 1510 SAT - has 13 AP courses including AP Calc BC, AP Chem, AP Physics C, plus took three classes at University of Alabama at the same time. Adding in all the dual enrollment, his unweighted GPA ended up well in the HC range. He definitely has the academic chops.

SMBHC looks like a nice option for people - my son would have liked to be able to do it. He just wasn’t their cuppa, and that’s ok. He’ll do well elsewhere, and he’s got the six figure merit scholarships there also :slight_smile:

There isn’t a new director. DSG has been there since 2003.

That is true on out of student students. Alabama is even higher % of OOS. It is the only way for these schools to attract a higher grade of student across the board. Plus they are now getting a ton of Texas and Georgia kids that didn’t get in UT, aTm or UGa. Merit aid plays a huge role as well.

Good luck to your son elody!! He sounds like a very smart young man.

UncleTupelo - It might be a new admissions director - not the actual honors college. Another interesting factoid - they take far more girls than boys!

As do most all public flagships. UNC is 61% female. I can’t think of one in the South that admits more males. It has been a trend nationally for 40 years or more.
Also there is a very connected OM poster named collegeguider that could address your thoughts on the essays moving towards activism. He/she seems to really know what actually happens at OM.

I would definitely be interested to hear what @collegeguider has to say about OM Honors College Admissions. As I said in an early post, I wasn’t too shocked about my son’s waitlisting due to elodyCOH’s experience. But my son and husband were surprised.

Yes, the competition is tough and the review process is holistic. It’s a combination of academics, rec letters, resume information and essays. It may also depend on what committee members are reviewing. There isn’t a new Admissions Director or Dean of Honors. Both individuals have been in place for many years. They have a new admissions counselor at Honors, but he’s the newest staff member. All of the “special programs” at Ole Miss have become more competitive as more students apply. The CME has students with perfect ACT scores applying from places like Illinois among others. The Honors College offers junior entry admission for students with 45 credit hours and a 3.5 college GPA. So, there are still options to join. I hope your students will consider that opportunity!

@collegeguider Thanks for the info. The Honors Program was the only draw to Ole Miss - so the waitlist for that program removed the school from consideration. He moved on and has other great options!

@collegeguider -Thank you for the response. I’m sure there is something they’re looking for, and without being in the room with the committee, we’ll never know whether it is GPA and/or social activism.

Waiting and applying Junior year to the Honors College is not an option. For a nerdy student who doesn’t want to party or join a fraternity, the ability to live in the honors dorm freshman year was a serious consideration and without that, Ole Miss’s appeal goes down. Harder to pass up schools that are higher rated, or an arguably more competitive Honors Program elsewhere.

@elodyCOH Happy to report that my son was admitted to the CME. And they gave him some additional scholarship money, which will go towards fees or room & board since he already has full OOS tuition.