The Last Thing College Applicants Want to Read

What admissions officers told their school newspapers about skyrocketing applications

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Just what every high school senior wants to see as they wait for their college admissions notification: Cornell, Yale, Columbia, UPenn, Dartmouth, Brown, Princeton and Harvard student newspapers announcing that application ratesĀ  have skyrocketed, and admission rates have fallen to (in many cases) single digits.

So, while you're waiting for an email notification or hoping for that envelope (hopefully not the smaller one), here's a glance at what admissions officers tell their student reporters about another record year for college applicants at the Ivies:

  • Harvard (6.2 percent Admit Rate) - The Dean of Admissions on the 2,158 students who were selected from a pool of 34,950 applicants: "You can't help but feel optimistic when you look at an applicant pool like ours ... It's a big sign that American higher education has democratized."
  • Yale (7.35 percent Admit Rate) - Admissions officer Jeffrey Brenzel explains in very plain language why the admissions rate dropped again this year: "The admit rate went down simply because applications went up," Brenzel said. "We're aiming at about the same number of places as last year, and we had a significant application increase, so our admit rate must go down as a result."
  • Cornell (18 percent Admit Rate) - After noting that the school has received its highest amount of undergraduate applications "ever," the dean of the Graduate School says: "It was a great year, and another wonderful class of Cornellians will be on their way to Ithaca!"
  • Princeton (8.39 percent Admit Rate) - What every college applicant dreads seeing on their notification letter: "The quality of the pool was truly outstanding ... It's so humbling to read these applications and know how strong these candidates are."
  • Columbia (6.4 percent Admit Rate) - Quite possibly a well-done humble brag from the school's president Lee Bollinger: "I certainly don't take pleasure in turning down 92 percent of everybody who applies. It has to be kept in perspective."
  • Brown (8.7 percent Admit Rate) - Good to know, even if you were one of the 28,254 applicants that didn't get in: "According to a University press release, the class of 2015 is 'the most racially, socioeconomically and geographically diverse class in Brown's history.'"
  • UPenn (12.3 percent Admit Rate) - Penn's diversity numbers dropped five percent this year, and one alumnus was surprised: "It's surprising because Penn has a very well-oiled recruiting process for minority students," he said. "Penn takes minority recruitment very seriously, and they're good at it."
  • Dartmouth (9.7 percent Admit Rate) - "We attract a very highly accomplished and high-achieving group of applicants," the Dean of Admissions said. "Our challenge will be to yield them because I think they'll be a highly sought-after group."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.