Waitlist do’s and don’ts

Georgia Tech’s Rick Clark penned this recent piece for their blog. It’s one of the clearest and most honest explanations of college waitlists that I have seen, and it includes some equally useful advice with steps to take (and not to take) to increase your chances of converting that wait into an admission.

With the often trite and misleading admission strategy of “demonstrate interest!” virally circulating among so many students and parents, please don’t skip Clark’s tip #3:

3. Don’t stalk the admission office. Claim your spot, send in what they ask for, and wait. That’s it. If you really feel compelled to send an email to an admission counselor that you’ve met or corresponded with previously, that could be your other action item. If you do that, it’s a one and done deal. We have seen students send a painted shoe with a message on the bottom reading: “just trying to get my foot in the door.” Memorable, but ultimately ineffective. Admission offices regularly receive chocolates, cookies, and treats along with poems or notes. It is safe to say that a couple hundred grams of sugar and a few couplets are not going to outweigh institutional priorities. There is a distinct line between demonstrating interest and stalking. Stay in your lane.