College Admissions Expert Elizabeth Levine: Will I Ever Come Off the Waiting List?

07 Jun 2019 | 04:41

    It's that time of year. All students have received a response from the schools that they applied to, accepted, declined or the infamous “You have been placed on our waiting list”. What does this mean? Will I still get into my dream school? The answer is, it depends, but, if you opt for putting yourself on their waitlist, there are actions you can take to show your interest and improve your chances.
    I'm always up front and real with my families. I never want to create false hope. There are some schools that rarely take anyone off of their waitlist and offer admission, many of which are the highly selective schools, such as the Ivies. See the link below from The Princeton Review on waitlist statistics by college. As an example, Yale took 0% off of their waitlist.
    If you do choose to opt for being placed on their waitlist, below are a few things you can do to show this school your interest in attending:
    - If you know you won't need any financial aid or won't qualify for financial aid, make it clear in your waitlist message that you will not need funding for your college education. Many times, financial aid standing is a component of selecting students off of the waitlist
    - Visit the campus, even if you have visited previously. Stop by admissions, take a tour, attend an information session, make an attempt to connect with an admissions officer
    - Be accessible – Many times when a student is notified that they are being offered admission from the waitlist, they have 24 hours to make their decision and, if there is no response, the school removes the student and moves onto the next one
    No matter what, put a deposit on a school that you have gotten accepted to and that you are happy about attending. Move forward, picture yourself there and start planning the next chapter of your life. Don't stay in limbo, waiting to hear if you were accepted off of the waitlist. It may be a VERY long time, if ever, that you will hear.
    Link to The Princeton Review – Waitlist Stats
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    If you have any questions about the college admissions process or the above information please do not hesitate to contact me at or by phone, 845.551.6946.

    Elizabeth Levine
    Signature College Counseling is an Orange County, Hudson Valley based company
    that works one on one with students and their families in navigating the admissions process so you attend the college that is right for you.
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