What Your Rejection Letter Really Means About The College That Sent It


After years of studying and testing, culminating in the stressful college application process, countless high school seniors this time of year nervously await the acceptance or rejection letters and emails. We all know rejection hurts but here is what the college rejection letter really tells you about the college rejecting you.

All of that yackity-yack about diversity you listened to at the information session at each college emphasized the value of different viewpoints, cultures and experiences but they didn't really mean it, apparently. The college that rejected you didn't extend that love of diversity to a love of diversity of grade point averages. Those liars.

And how could they reject you after that killer essay describing a struggle you overcame? How many people on the admissions committee have successfully transitioned from an oxycontin addict to a heroin addict to just smoking pot and drinking to excess?

Similarly, the college that rejected you claimed to look at the whole student and not just your grades and test scores. And you spent an inordinate amount of time showing that college who you really are, warts and all, from your love of partying to your Xbox prowess. Clearly they undervalued not only your social skills but your finger-thumb dexterity as well.

You nailed the college interview, so clearly the interviewer wasn't the sharpest if he wasn't impressed. So many high school students try hard to impress the college interviewer by yapping on and on about all of the 501(c)(3) charities they started to end world hunger and eradicate disease. So you should have made an impression for pointing out just how average you are but you got zero points for your honesty and originality. That interviewer is hopefully looking for another job right now.

Clearly the admissions committee was overworked and exhausted when they read your application because they claim to search for that upward trajectory that your transcript embodied. Only an idiot could miss the upward trajectory of a student who goes from flunking 5 courses a term to only flunking a couple. Two is smaller than five. Duh. That's moving up. Idiots.

Most people would probably agree that the section on the common application for awards and prizes is too big. Honestly, how many people have so many awards and prizes that they need 500 words to describe it all? Anyone can be the captain of a sport or the president of a club but not many people can dazzle them like you did with going from full-time rehab to only weekends in less than a year. You were wrongly overlooked.

Perhaps the college rejecting you just wanted to see more sports on your application. But sports are for team players and there's no "I" in "team sports" so why would anyone want to spend all that time and effort doing sports? But as the local cops know, you can run really fast when you want to so maybe you should have mentioned that in the sports section of the application. Whatever. It's water under the bridge, now.

So that college rejection isn't a reflection on you at all. It's a reflection on the shortsightedness of an admissions committee that doesn't value what you have to offer. It is the inability of the admissions committee to see the value in a diversity of grades and test scores and other qualities which will restrict their incoming class to a homogeneous group of smarty-pants and overachievers. Thank goodness you dodged that bullet.

Welcome to the real world. Life is full of rejection. If one college doesn't value what you have to offer there are others that will. It's their loss.

Earlier on Huff/Post50:

What Would You Say To Your 20-Year-Old Self?