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Tuesday, December 1, 2015
Beware of the Pundits
Election Day may still be a year away, but the candidates are still omnipresent in the news cycle. And it's been this way for months. By the time the final ballots are cast, most of us will be so battle weary, we'll be glad to put the noise to rest.
What does this have to do with college admissions? Practically speaking? Nothing. But look at it another way. Like any great job search, political candidacy depends on a myriad of metrics, of which aptitude is only a small component. It's as much about who you know, how you look, and the size of your marketing budget.
Are you with me?
I'll admit, I borrowed the idea from a Washington Post blog, which extended the metaphor in far greater detail than I can here. There was an important admonition though. Beware of the pundits. These are the talking heads, whose voices are the loudest-both from the public pulpit and inside your mind.
For college hopefuls, the words of the pundits can be powerful. The fantasy of a dream school can be far more powerful than the reality that said dream school isn't actually a good fit. It's hard to strive for something we can't yet grasp; hard to prepare for an experience that is wholly unknown.
Which is why it is so crucial to stay authentic. Do your own research. Don't pretend to be someone you're not. Worse, don’t try to be the person you think your admissions officer wants you to be.
The admissions process may leave you feeling battle-scarred. You may feel like your cover letter matters more than your resume, or that no one is really reading either. The truth is, college admissions isn't perfect. The results may be unexpected or even unfair. Still, you want to aim to land in the place you really want to be-not the place you think you should be.
After all, you are a student, not a politician. For that, you may want to be very grateful.
Labels: Beware of the Pundits
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