How to Stay Ahead in the Changing Game of College Admissions

The college admissions process is evolving rapidly and has changed markedly over the past half-to-full decade, as the most selective schools look for demonstrated passions rather than the well-roundedness that was most desirable for Gen X and early millennial applicants.

I experienced this firsthand last year when by brother went through the admissions process, and it is consistent with what several college counselors told me off the record.

“Parents need to know that signing their kids up to play an instrument and be on the board of three student clubs doesn’t matter anymore for an elite school,” said one anonymous admissions director at a school ranked in the top 20 in the last US News and World Report Rankings. “If they are deeply passionate about music and played at Carnegie Hall, well that is a different story.”