|4 Tips for Deferred Students
1. Take Stock of the Search
A deferral offers an opportunity to take stock of the college search. The college search process offers an opportunity for improved self-knowledge. A deferral or denial calls for some self-reflection and going back to the basics of the search. What are my academic goals? What do I need to grow personally? What type of atmosphere will help me to grow? What do I need in a future school to achieve academic and personal growth?
2. Try to See the Productivity in Deferral
Sometimes students need a denial to see that the fit was poor from the beginning. Like a fanatic sports guru choosing to apply ED to Babson on Dad’s prodding. Or, a Russian major applying to a school without a single course offering in the language because it’s close to a significant other. As one wise student put it this season, “I never would have been able to turn it down and it’s not the right school for me.”
3. Give Yourself a Break
It’s not fair. Nothing about highly selective admission to college is “fair.” It happened, now, let it go. Do not spend hours searching for the conspiracy that kept you out. Do not become addicted to venting about the injustice on College Confidential. Do not try to identify the thing you could have done better. At the highest level, college admission decisions are predictably disappointing. Though any rational person knows that chances of admission to Harvard are slim, the record low 7% admission rate feels worse when it happens to you. Take solace in the fact that 93% of the people who applied feel like you do. It’s not you, it’s them: so move on.
4. Get to Work
The best way to move on is to take action. Active steps toward achieving your goals in the next phase of your college process will keep you from wallowing. Let the disappointment fuel your pursuit. Pour your energy into essays or short answer questions for the next wave of schools.