Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Admission Q & A

Yesterday afternoon we went to the office of undergraduate admissions at Columbia University. There, we met Mr. David Buckwald. Primarily, he takes care of applications coming from the West Coast. He was very energetic and chock full of answers to all the questions hurled at him.

One thing I did learn was that at Columbia is that one can double major. He specifically used the example of someone who wanted to be pre-med, but also had a love for music. He also said that there was a program to become pre-med at Columbia, and that the students that do it have a high acceptance rate.

He told us a little bit of financial aid and early decision. Columbia has a need-blind admissions process. He said to finish part one of the application as soon as possible because alumni would interview people around their area. Interviews can only help, not hurt. Last year, Columbia had about 25,000 applicants, and about 2,500 we admitted -- about 10%.

After the meeting, I realized that I would have to work extremely hard if I wanted to get accepted to Columbia. I better not procrastinate on my applications, and I better get started on them as soon as I get home.


Charles Tillman Ramsey said...

I am glad that you realize that you will have to work hard immediately upon your return to the Bay Area. This is good that you recognize, after speaking with David Buckwald, what it will take to get an acceptance to a Highly Selective University. I want to commend you on your post. It was insightful and well reasoned.

Continue to absorb all that you will learn at Columbia and bring it back to the community. I look forward to hearing your thoughts and views at the beginning of the school year. I am also curious if you will apply to UPENN or Columbia early decision. Do you have it within you to take that bold step? We will see.

I did speak with Principal Sue Kahn this morning and she was pleased that you and Gabe were doing well. She is very happy with the students this year who have been part of the ILC. I hope that your hopes and dreams were realized. Cristina, I have a lot of hopes for you and I will follow you through your senior year.

Please continue to keep us informed about your latest developments. I look forward to your final post and reflections.

Take care.

Charles T. Ramsey, Esq.
School Board Member
West Contra Costa
Unified School District

Don Gosney said...


It’s a shame that more college admissions officers couldn’t take the time to fully explain the admissions process and give some pointers to potential applicants. It might make things a lot easier for both sides in the long run.

Time constraints and the number of students surrounding them at these college fairs often restrict their ability to go into any real details.

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