Change Ad Consent OT: - College in the COVID era | The Boneyard

OT: College in the COVID era

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HuskyHawk

Hoping to see something that looks like basketball
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Please, no politics. It’s not about that. Let’s keep this out of the cesspool please.

My daughter is a “rising senior” in HS (I dislike the phrase). So far SATs have repeatedly been cancelled. She has one scheduled for September. Almost no schools are allowing visits. Most colleges have gone SAT/ACT optional, but what will that mean for those with or without test scores? A COVID essay has been added to the standard application. Meanwhile, some significant percentage (I heard 20% at Harvard) of recent graduates are deferring admission. What does that mean for the class of 2021? Fewer available slots? Massive class sizes?

it feels chaotic to me. For those of you with kids in college, or perhaps about to attend or with a HS Jr. or Sr. what are you doing? How are you approaching it? I have a webinar with the college board Wednesday night on applying to college in the COVID era. Not sure what to expect, they would be somewhat biased towards SATs obviously. I suppose we should be glad we took a few visits in the fall of 2019. But it doesn’t feel adequate. I’m not sure when we will get the needed remaining visits in, virtual isn’t helpful.

Then there are finances. The schools need money, so how will that impact things like merit aid? Or perhaps admitting kids below the median because they can pay. On the flip side, with so many out of work, will that shift more kids to lower cost options like CCSU?

I felt like I had a decent handle on this before COVID. Now? Not sure what to do next.
 
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My younger son will be a freshman at Hamilton College in a week and my older son is starting graduate school in a couple weeks. I certainly don't envy anyone going through the college search process right now. You've asked a lot of questions and they're all good ones with no right answers because of all the uncertainty.

Some schools are doing tours. A couple friends with children who will be high school seniors just did a few a couple weeks ago. I know Hamilton is doing tours. I'm sure they are all taking precautions and there are probably limitations on what you can do at each school (e.g. not going into many buildings). But outside is better than inside and while the weather is still nice, and as long as you are comfortable with the risk, you should do as many tours as you can in the next couple months.

I would have your daughter take the SAT/ACT anyway. Even though many schools are going test optional, there are some who aren't. And if she does great then you can use the score as a differentiator even with schools who are test optional. If she doesn't then you don't have to send the score to any school that doesn't require it. Based on my experience standardized test scores are more important to the bigger schools than the smaller schools. And even at the bigger schools they're probably not as important as parents think.

Since the pandemic happened after applications were due most students who were accepted at schools have deferred their admissions. I know a handful of my son's friends who are doing that. There was an article in the Boston Globe last week about this (I think you saw it since you used the Harvard 20% figure that was in the article). I think Williams College was 9%. Others they mentioned were around 5%. Will that make it harder to get into schools next year? Depends. Did those schools fill all their available slots in this class with students off the wait list? Or did some slots still go unfilled. A handful of my son's friends got into great schools off the wait list. One got into Bowdoin after being committed to BU. Some others were Middlebury from being committed to Wake Forest and Northwestern from being committed to Michigan. Did those schools fill all their slots? I don't know.

Colleges are going to want to fill their campus 100% with students next year so if this class ended up being filled from the wait lists then I do believe it will be harder to get into those schools next year because the schools committed a greater percentage of those slots next year than they usually do to deferrals. If they didn't fill all their slots then they may try to fill the campus by having a bigger class next year, which might make it easier to get accepted at those schools.

Financial aid is definitely going to be an issue next year at schools that don't have very large endowments. Especially schools that did not have students on campus this coming year and thus didn't collect room and board. Many schools are saying they are hurting financially. I'm sure you saw that article recently where they put schools in 4 quadrants (thrive, survive, die) depending on their projected ability to survive the pandemic.

If you're really feeling helpless you could always hire a college consultant to help you navigate the process. The one we used wasn't that expensive (I think we spent about $2000 total) and it was worth it for me because even though I was very knowledgable about the process having been through it already, it was helpful to have an experienced sounding board for my questions and ideas.

Good luck. But whatever happens rest assured your daughter will be fine wherever she ends up.
 

HuskyHawk

Hoping to see something that looks like basketball
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My younger son will be a freshman at Hamilton College in a week and my older son is starting graduate school in a couple weeks. I certainly don't envy anyone going through the college search process right now. You've asked a lot of questions and they're all good ones with no right answers because of all the uncertainty.

Some schools are doing tours. A couple friends with children who will be high school seniors just did a few a couple weeks ago. I know Hamilton is doing tours. I'm sure they are all taking precautions and there are probably limitations on what you can do at each school (e.g. not going into many buildings). But outside is better than inside and while the weather is still nice, and as long as you are comfortable with the risk, you should do as many tours as you can in the next couple months.

I would have your daughter take the SAT/ACT anyway. Even though many schools are going test optional, there are some who aren't. And if she does great then you can use the score as a differentiator even with schools who are test optional. If she doesn't then you don't have to send the score to any school that doesn't require it. Based on my experience standardized test scores are more important to the bigger schools than the smaller schools. And even at the bigger schools they're probably not as important as parents think.

Since the pandemic happened after applications were due most students who were accepted at schools have deferred their admissions. I know a handful of my son's friends who are doing that. There was an article in the Boston Globe last week about this (I think you saw it since you used the Harvard 20% figure that was in the article). I think Williams College was 9%. Others they mentioned were around 5%. Will that make it harder to get into schools next year? Depends. Did those schools fill all their available slots in this class with students off the wait list? Or did some slots still go unfilled. A handful of my son's friends got into great schools off the wait list. One got into Bowdoin after being committed to BU. Some others were Middlebury from being committed to Wake Forest and Northwestern from being committed to Michigan. Did those schools fill all their slots? I don't know.

Colleges are going to want to fill their campus 100% with students next year so if this class ended up being filled from the wait lists then I do believe it will be harder to get into those schools next year because the schools committed a greater percentage of those slots next year than they usually do to deferrals. If they didn't fill all their slots then they may try to fill the campus by having a bigger class next year, which might make it easier to get accepted at those schools.

Financial aid is definitely going to be an issue next year at schools that don't have very large endowments. Especially schools that did not have students on campus this coming year and thus didn't collect room and board. Many schools are saying they are hurting financially. I'm sure you saw that article recently where they put schools in 4 quadrants (thrive, survive, die) depending on their projected ability to survive the pandemic.

If you're really feeling helpless you could always hire a college consultant to help you navigate the process. The one we used wasn't that expensive (I think we spent about $2000 total) and it was worth it for me because even though I was very knowledgable about the process having been through it already, it was helpful to have an experienced sounding board for my questions and ideas.

Good luck. But whatever happens rest assured your daughter will be fine wherever she ends up.
Thanks. Great information. Talking to my wife this morning and we definitely want to find schools allowing visits and start getting more done. First try was BC and they won’t even let you informally tour by yourself. Hopefully we will have better luck elsewhere.

She will take SATs in September barring a third cancellation. She was scheduled to take it in March and then June.
 
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I keep waiting for this to catch on more, but have you considered community college or trade schools? the online learning won't hurt so much when you're only shelling out a few hundred bucks a semester. spend a couple years there walk out with a certificate have a solid background and then decide if a 4 year college is the way to go. Save a ton of money and get some direction before you plunge into the deep end only to find you want to major in sociology or something that definitely doesn't require a $100,000+ investment and a lifetime of debt

some of the best engineers I've worked with started in community college or trade school.
 
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what are kids doing that deferred their admissions? Not like you can freely travel the world or easily get an internship
 

HuskyHawk

Hoping to see something that looks like basketball
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I keep waiting for this to catch on more, but have you considered community college or trade schools? the online learning won't hurt so much when you're only shelling out a few hundred bucks a semester. spend a couple years there walk out with a certificate have a solid background and then decide if a 4 year college is the way to go. Save a ton of money and get some direction before you plunge into the deep end only to find you want to major in sociology or something that definitely doesn't require a $100,000+ investment and a lifetime of debt

some of the best engineers I've worked with started in community college or trade school.
If I had a son who was interested in it sure. My daughter isn’t suited to the trades or anything technical, she’s more artistic if anything. Maybe data sciences. She also needs the experience away from home after 12 years of private school.

I am hoping that by fall 2021 it won’t be online. If it is we may consider sending her abroad.
 
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I keep waiting for this to catch on more, but have you considered community college or trade schools? the online learning won't hurt so much when you're only shelling out a few hundred bucks a semester. spend a couple years there walk out with a certificate have a solid background and then decide if a 4 year college is the way to go. Save a ton of money and get some direction before you plunge into the deep end only to find you want to major in sociology or something that definitely doesn't require a $100,000+ investment and a lifetime of debt

some of the best engineers I've worked with started in community college or trade school.
Had this discussion with a neighbor whose son is starting this fall....ALL virtual...Is it worth the cost of a private school for just online? Why not just take online classes at community college for for 1/30 the cost and then continue at your intended school year 2 with 1 year transferred in...I guess it depends on finances
 
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One of my sons will be a freshman at Va. Tech. Taking him to campus 8/20 to move into his dorm. Classes will be virtual this semester with the students going home for Thanksgiving break and then not returning back to campus to finish the first semester until they are told to. There’s a good chance that the rest of his first semester and then the spring semester will be done virtuallay from home.
I just sent in a 13k payment yesterday for the fall semester. Tuition,room,meals,etc.
I’m assuming and hoping that the university credits me for the room and meals if the last month of the fall semester is not done on campus ? Will there be a larger outbreak before Thanksgiving where they are all sent home ? Who knows.

I have another son who will be a senior in high school and he will be home taking virtual classes for the first 4 months and then the school system will make a decision on the rest of the year. He’s had SAT’s canceled twice and we dont know if he will even take one before the year is over.
His grades are decent but I think his grades, and most others, will suffer from on line learning.
What will colleges be looking at for admission ? Will he be able to take visits ? Will there be easier requirements because colleges will be looking to fill enrollment ?

Just an all around tough time for college freshman who are looking to start their adulthood on their own and I think an even tougher time for high school seniors who may lose their entire senior year.
 
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what are kids doing that deferred their admissions? Not like you can freely travel the world or easily get an internship
A few of my son's friends are deferring. Some from great schools - Johns Hopkins, Yale, Notre Dame, American University, etc. All will be working doing interesting things. One is interested in pre-med and will be assisting a surgeon. Another is interested in law and he's working for a judge. There are jobs out there like that if you are motivated and look hard enough.
 
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A few of my son's friends are deferring. Some from great schools - Johns Hopkins, Yale, Notre Dame, American University, etc. All will be working doing interesting things. One is interested in pre-med and will be assisting a surgeon. Another is interested in law and he's working for a judge. There are jobs out there like that if you are motivated and look hard enough.
That's great. Glad they were able to find something. The experience they'll get before going to college will be immense. It's too bad that's not the norm, obviously not everyone knows what they want to do but to see what the actual job would be like before you start studying it seems very practical.
 

gtcam

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I feel sorry for anyone sending children to college these days
Most all my colleagues at work who have kids in college ranging from the state schools to Ivy League complain about the lack of true learning and instead are crammed with sociological rantings and kids having to echo thoughts spouted by professors or receive poor grades with dissenting opinions.

As far as during this pandemic time, I can only imagine how hard it is to make any quality decision involving so much money. If its going to be virtual learning, I see no issue with doing one year of it through the state schools or community college. I know it's not what the kids desire but may make the most sense. I feel for anyone facing this dilemma and wish you all the best of luck.

I am lucky to have 3 kids go through college on minimum of 75% scholarships but I guess those days are behind us now

Best of luck to you and your children
 

Chin Diesel

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Have relatives who are returning for a senior year and two just starting freshmen year.
Senior has a bunch of hands on to finish degree.

Both the freshmen are in NYC area schools. One recently arrived on campus and the other shows up in a week. Classes will be combination of in person and online. Personally I think it's a waste to pay for room and board to take a class from your dorm, but it's not my fight and they're out of their parents' homes. Starting the road to independence.
My son graduated HS and really wasn't ready for college. He'll be joining military by year's end and then he gets his own GI Bill to pay for his college when he is ready, own health care and all that gravy.
In the meantime he is pizza delivery guy and is doing pretty fun good. A typical 8 hour shift pockets about $13-$15/hr in tips, gets a fixed stipend per delivery and still has a base pay of $5.50 while clocked out on road and $8.75 while in store. Makes about $20/hr combined pay.
Since he started working in May he's put over $2k in his savings, built his own going computer and bought accessories with cash and is paying $100/wk for car payment and car insurance (About 80% of what it costs). His paychecks go straight to savings and he only spends cash. He's got a good head on basics of staying within budget.
Have one more kid left in HS. Used the option to take classes from home for first qtr. Not worried about getting the 'rona as much as I think high schools will have a tough time administering a safe environment. We've already discussed geographic areas and programs of study. Early 2021 will most likely start some in person visits.
 
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I feel sorry for anyone sending children to college these days
Most all my colleagues at work who have kids in college ranging from the state schools to Ivy League complain about the lack of true learning and instead are crammed with sociological rantings and kids having to echo thoughts spouted by professors or receive poor grades with dissenting opinions.

As far as during this pandemic time, I can only imagine how hard it is to make any quality decision involving so much money. If its going to be virtual learning, I see no issue with doing one year of it through the state schools or community college. I know it's not what the kids desire but may make the most sense. I feel for anyone facing this dilemma and wish you all the best of luck.

I am lucky to have 3 kids go through college on minimum of 75% scholarships but I guess those days are behind us now

Best of luck to you and your children
You just can't resist.
 
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I know....

But I’m proud to say that does bleed husky blue and white though.
He’s been watching games with me since he was a toddler and UConn will remain his favorite team when he’s at Tech.
He bought me a VT Dad shirt for Fathers Day and it was a struggle to get it over my head and on. He got a kick out of that.
 
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I know....

But I’m proud to say that does bleed husky blue and white though.
He’s been watching games with me since he was a toddler and UConn will remain his favorite team when he’s at Tech.
He bought me a VT Dad shirt for Fathers Day and it was a struggle to get it over my head and on. He got a kick out of that.
I did undergrad at UVA so legally obligated to give you crap. Oddly being from CT my best friend went to VT so I spent a lot of time down there too.

I was same way though and UConn was always my 1st team...even when we had a home and home in football when the program was still competent
 

HuskyHawk

Hoping to see something that looks like basketball
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Sounds like you dodged a bullet there. (Go BU!)
We visited BU last fall. I'm not a fan, hate the non-campus urban setting. She liked it more than me.

A good friend of mine, now and from my UConn days, die hard UConn hoops fan who often took his eldest son to Gampel, has his son attending Syracuse as a freshman this year. That is taking the bullet right in the forehead. My kid isn't interested in sports and BC is a good school.
 
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We visited BU last fall. I'm not a fan, hate the non-campus urban setting. She liked it more than me.

A good friend of mine, now and from my UConn days, die hard UConn hoops fan who often took his eldest son to Gampel, has his son attending Syracuse as a freshman this year. That is taking the bullet right in the forehead. My kid isn't interested in sports and BC is a good school.
BC is in a very safe area, beautiful campus, and accessible to Boston via Commonwealth Avenue line.

I lived near there in the early 1970's. Nice reservoir nearby. BU is closer to Boston, but yes, no campus and urban setting, but close to restaurants and other attractions in Boston.
 
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We visited BU last fall. I'm not a fan, hate the non-campus urban setting. She liked it more than me.

A good friend of mine, now and from my UConn days, die hard UConn hoops fan who often took his eldest son to Gampel, has his son attending Syracuse as a freshman this year. That is taking the bullet right in the forehead. My kid isn't interested in sports and BC is a good school.
My oldest is actually starting his PhD at BC. I told him he can go to BC but the deal is there will be no BC gear in my house and I refuse to talk about their sports teams. He doesn't care about BC sports so he was fine with it. Then my wife puts a BC sticker on her car and I flipped out. That thing came off quickly!
 

HuskyHawk

Hoping to see something that looks like basketball
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My oldest is actually starting his PhD at BC. I told him he can go to BC but the deal is there will be no BC gear in my house and I refuse to talk about their sports teams. He doesn't care about BC sports so he was fine with it. Then my wife puts a BC sticker on her car and I flipped out. That thing came off quickly!
LOL. My wife went to BC, so she has BC sweatshirts etc. But she isn't in to college sports so it doesn't matter.

@Improviser I'd feel more comfortable with her at BC for sure. She wants access to city stuff, but doesn't need to be right there like BU is. She loved Tufts for example. One of my work colleagues had two daughters at BU, he said their rooms/apartments were broken into several times.
 

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