Tag Archives: undergraduate

Seeking Out Local Scholarships

Faced with the rising price of a college education, students and parents often look for ways to lower costs. As a result, scholarships for need, merit, athletics, community service, hobbies, and other interests are often highly sought after—especially large scholarships offered on a national level.

However, students should also consider scholarship sources closer to home. Local businesses, religious or ethnic organizations, and other venues often acknowledge hometown students by helping with college costs through scholarships that are awarded on a yearly basis. And while a $1,000 local scholarship may seem small in comparison to the large sticker price of college, winning several of these scholarships could help to offset the cost of room and board, books, and some tuition.

According to the CollegeBoard, local scholarships have an advantage over national scholarships: they are only available to a smaller pool of applicants from a specific geographic region. Because there is less competition, the chances of winning are higher. Students should still apply to national scholarships that are meaningful to them, but it is also important to research the scholarships offered to your specific high school, town, county, and state.

Now, local scholarships may seem like a great idea, but how to begin? We hope to guide you on a path to finding your best-fit local scholarships in this blog.

When should I start looking for local scholarships?

It is best to start researching scholarships by the spring and summer of junior year, as most deadlines for these awards are in the fall of senior year.

How do I find local scholarships?

High school
The way to begin is to ask the guidance office at your high school for a list of local scholarships. For example, Schreiber High School in Port Washington, NY, has an extensive list of local scholarships available to its high school students. Another group to ask within your high school is the PTA. Scarsdale High School in New York offers a PTA scholarship that awards college-bound seniors a one-time grant ranging from $1,000 to $7,500.

Local businesses
Next, look into scholarships from the companies or organizations where your parents are employed. Many companies offer scholarships to the children of employees, and the Human Resources department or your supervisor will most likely have this information. Many employee scholarships are also merit-based, rather than solely need-based.

Religious and ethnic organizations
Additionally, explore the groups that you and your family belong to. Religious and ethnic organizations often have scholarships that are awarded to the children of members. For example, the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Knights of Columbus, Elks, and Lions Club all offer national as well as local scholarship opportunities. If applicable, your place of worship may be aware of local scholarship opportunities that hope to assist members of your faith.

Additional sources
Other places to check include your town or community website and local media websites (TV, newspapers, and radio stations). Additionally, your library’s reference section may have a list of scholarships offered by town businesses or civic groups.

To cast a wider net, you can research the offerings of your state grant agency. Each state has scholarship opportunities for its residents. In taking a closer look at New York, for example, The Scholarship For Academic Excellence is intended for students who will attend a New York college, and is based on the results of the Regents exam.

Additionally, many scholarships in New York and elsewhere pay particular attention to applicants pursuing certain high demand fields. The NYS STEM Incentive Program provides a full SUNY or CUNY tuition scholarship for the top 10 percent of students in each New York State high school. Note though, that this scholarship (like many others of its kind) comes with conditions: awarded students must often either remain in the state or work in their particular field for a certain period of time. In the above example, students must pursue a STEM major and agree to work in a STEM field in New York State for five years after graduation.

What are the requirements?

Local scholarship competitions often ask for a completed FAFSA form, and may ask for tax returns/W2 forms (from student and parents), a copy of your transcript, letters of recommendation, and student-written essays. Many local scholarships also require you to take the PSAT/NMSQT by the fall of your junior year.

Finally, it is important to meet all scholarship deadlines, follow scholarship application directions, and gather your application materials early.

Here at Collegiate Gateway, we are happy to help you throughout your college search. Feel free to contact us!

Mental Health in College

In recent years, the mental health of college students has become an increasing focus in the news, as more and more students seek help on-campus for anxiety and depression. The exact cause of this development is unclear and much-debated. Some experts point to increased pressure, stress, and a generational lack of coping mechanisms. Others hope that it shows the stigma of seeking treatment is lifting, and that students are more open to talking about their problems and finding solutions.

In this blog, we’ll take a look at how to best help your college-age children, friends, and family. The conversation is one that everyone should be having, whether you’re personally experiencing a mental health issue, helping someone else cope with their struggles, or even just know someone at risk. Everyone can potentially play a role in assistance and recovery.

Trends in Students’ Mental Health

Experiencing mental health issues in college is more pervasive than you may realize. According to the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI), one in five students experiences a mental health issue during college, and 75% of mental illnesses are onset by age 24.

In 2016, Penn State University’s Center for Collegiate Mental Health’s published their annual report, which studied more than 100,000 college students nationwide and found an increase in students pursuing mental health services over the past six years. The report cited that anxiety, depression, and academic stress were the main factors that students referred to in seeking services, and notably that “more than half of students visiting campus clinics cite anxiety as a health concern.” In the American College Health Association’s study, half of the college students said they experienced “overwhelming anxiety,” and 32% said they felt so depressed at times “that it was difficult to function.”

Carrie Landa, director of Behavioral Medicine at Boston University, notes that statistically, the rates of major mental illness cases (bipolar disorders and schizophrenia) have remained fairly unchanged, however the recent increases in anxiety may have social and environmental causes for the current generation of college students.

Landa says that these students seem less able to cope with problems that to a previous generation would have seemed part of normal life. Dori Hutchinson, director of services at BU’s Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation says, “I think a lot of kids don’t know what productive struggle is. When it’s hard, they think, ‘Why is it so hard? What’s wrong with me?’”

Potential Causes of Increased Mental Health Issues

Today’s college students deal with a range of issues, including earlier academic pressure, the compulsive use of social media, helicopter/snowplow parenting, and a heightened focus on preparing for a successful career. Dan Jones, the director of counseling and psychological services at Appalachian State University, points to escalating pressures during high school, which causes student to arrive at college already burdened with stress. Overprotective parenting also gives students less incentive to develop life skills or independently make important decisions, making it more difficult to adjust to life in college.

In addition to heightened academic pressure, college is also a time of a major life transitions, new friendships, increased independence, and exposure to drinking and drugs. Lack of sleep and poor eating habits can also affect student health. Additionally, the loss of day-to-day family support is a large adjustment for most students, and many people go through periods of feeling alone or homesick.

The Role of Students

When faced with a mounting mental health issue, students often rely on their friends to step in. Peers can be extremely helpful in being the first responders to mental health crises, and the more mental health is discussed and understood, the less it is ignored and stigmatized.

To that end, the National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI) and the Jed Foundation have created a College Guide that aims to help students and parents recognize the common warning signs of mental illness and protect their mental health in college. The College Guide makes the following mental health recommendations to students:

  • Build connections: Get involved in your campus and community. Attend campus events and clubs, sporting events, student organizations, and volunteering activities.
  • Manage stress: Exercise, sleep, make to-do lists, meditate or pray, eat healthy foods, and avoid drugs and alcohol.
  • If you find you cannot manage stress: Seek advice from peers and family, and contact a resident advisor or the campus counseling or guidance center.

The Role of Parents

While parents are not present on-campus, they are definitely an integral part of any student’s mental well-being.. According to the College Guide, parents should share any family mental health history with their child before students leave for college. The parents and student should have an action plan in place for the child to follow if they are feeling overwhelmed or struggling with anxiety, depression, or anything that seems out of their control. Parents should call students and periodically check in and offer support.

The Role of Colleges

Awareness and on-campus mental health services at colleges have increased in recent years due to the tragedies and suicides that have resulted from mental health crises. Time cites the massacre at Virginia Tech University as one of the worst cases to result from untreated mental illness, where it was revealed that the gunman had pursued on-campus mental health services as a student three times, but was unsuccessfully treated.

Each college varies greatly in the type and amount of mental health services offered on-campus. According to NAMI, most, but not all, colleges have a counseling center or health clinic on campus. Students should be aware of the on-campus services that are available to them before they leave for college.

As an example, Boston University has comprehensive services for students, including the Student Health Services Behavioral Medicine, the Center for Anxiety & Related Disorders, the Center for Psychiatric Rehabilitation, the Danielsen Institute, and the Sexual Assault Response & Prevention Center. Mental health services provided by Behavioral Medicine are free, whereas other centers may require health insurance or payment.

According to The Wall Street Journal, some colleges are adding online therapy programs, peer support groups and quick phone sessions to accommodate higher numbers of students seeking mental health services. Other colleges are responding by embedding mental health counselors within campus teaching buildings.

The Jed Foundation, a non-profit organization working to promote emotional health and prevent suicide among college and university students, has created The Campus Program. This program assesses and supports colleges in developing strategic plans for expanding their mental health services. More than 100 colleges are participating in the program.

While college can be an extraordinarily wonderful time of your life, the transition to college can be difficult. And while some strides have been made, many institutions struggle to keep up with changing conditions in the field of mental health. As such, it is important for all parents and students to be conscious of mental-health issues, and never be afraid to seek help if necessary.

For more information regarding the college journey, please feel free to contact us. We’re always happy to help.

Inside Oxford’s Many Colleges

So, you’ve decided that the University of Oxford is a great fit for your intellectual curiosity and passion for classics, physics, law, or another of the fifty courses offered at Oxford. Now what?  For an introduction to Oxford, read our previous blog here.

Students can only apply to one Oxford College!

Students who wish to attend Oxford University can only apply to only one of the 33 Oxford colleges.  In fact, UK students are limited to applying to only five colleges total, of which only one can be from Oxford or Cambridge, collectively known as “Oxbridge.”

How do the Oxford Colleges differ?

While all the Oxford colleges share the fundamental qualities of intellectual rigor, self-directed study, and learning through small tutorials, they each have a very distinct identity.  For students who want to attend Oxford, there are a variety of factors that influence their decision of which college to apply to.

  • Course of study.  Academic subject area is the #1 factor because you apply to a particular course of study.  Each of the 33 Oxford colleges offers a subset of the full array of 50 academic fields.  For instance, if you are applying for Computer Science, you would need to restrict your options to one of the 13 colleges that offer this field. If you are interested in the “subject combination” of Computer Science and Philosophy, you would have only eight colleges to consider.
  • Age of college.  Age matters!  Some students are more attracted to the older colleges, because they feel they carry more prestige, or they like the feel or look. Professor Sir Drummond Bone, Master of Balliol College, established in 1360, says “Balliol is not only arguably the oldest but arguably the leading intellectual College in Oxford – and therefore in the World. It has stood on a single site longer than any other college in the English-speaking world.”




Oriel College, founded in 1326



Corpus Christi College, founded in 1517

  • Architecture and facilities. The architecture of the colleges varies greatly as a function of the era in which it was build and renovated, and the prevailing styles.  Students may also be attracted to particular features of the college such as the library, gardens chapel or dining hall.


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Balliol College has a magnificent, grand dining hall, with paintings of many of the Masters and people influential in the history of the college.

  • Location within Oxford. The campus is spread throughout the town of Oxford.  There is a centralized core of colleges, including the oldest. These colleges are also closer to the center of town, with access to restaurants and shops. Some students prefer these, and others prefer some of the outlying colleges that have more open space. Students may value whether the college is close to the River Thames, or meadows or the University Science Center.


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Close-up of High Street, one of the central streets for Oxford University, and the few adjacent colleges.



The Examination School building, on High Street, is where all Oxford students take exams.



Center of town includes more opportunities for socializing with classmates.

  • Extracurricular activities. Many colleges have a long history of depth in a particular extracurricular activity. For instance, New College is known for its choir, which performs world-wide; Magdalen College is known for theater and orchestra; and Mansfield for journalism.


  • Size of student population. The colleges vary from Wycliffe Hall, with 84 undergrads and 22 graduate students, to St. Catherine’s with 487 undergrads and 307 graduate students. Some colleges have no graduate students at all.



New College, 1 of the largest student populations, with 441 undergraduates and 300 graduate students


  • Size of the physical campus.  The colleges range from a small, intimate physical space, with perhaps one courtyard, such as St. Edmund “Teddy” Hall, to a larger physical imprint with a secondary courtyard and expansive gardens, such as Corpus Christi College.



St. Edmund “Teddy” Hall’s primary courtyard

  • Accommodations. Some colleges have all singles, like New College, whereas others have a mix of room types, as at Oriel College. Also, colleges vary in terms of how many years housing is guaranteed, e.g. Mansfield College guarantees housing for only one year, whereas Lincoln College guarantees for all three years.



New College, where all the rooms are singles.


  • Degree of formality.  The colleges vary in terms of how formal or informal they are.  At more formal colleges, faculty dress in formal gown-attire, students may need to dress up more often; and students are required to address faculty by their titles of Dr. or Professor.
  • Alums of the college – both famous and familiar.  Balliol College draws students who want to study PPE partly because three recent Prime Ministers of England attended Balliol and studied PPE! In addition, students may be influenced by which colleges their friends, classmates, favorite teachers, family or community members have attended. Jesus College was founded by Elizabeth I, has always had Welsh affiliations, and has the only Celtic Library at Oxford. As result, Welsh students are often steered by their family or school to apply there.


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Balliol College, portraits of Prime Ministers who graduated.

  • “Feel” – as with universities in the US and elsewhere, each college has an intangible feel that students may or not resonate with.  In the words of several student ambassadors at different colleges during Open Visit Day, “I just felt so happy here when I visited!”

No matter what colleges you decide to apply to, whether they are in the UK, the US or anywhere else in the world, make sure that they offer you the features you need!  And if you need guidance, contact Collegiate Gateway. As always, we’re happy to help! 


Transfer Admissions Part I: Your Chances

An increasing number of students are seeking transfer admissions, according to Alexander Ott, a past president of the New York State Transfer and Articulation Association. In fact, about a third of all college students transfer at some point in their college career, including transfers between community colleges and four-year colleges, as well as between four-year colleges themselves. Students transfer for a variety of reasons, including changes in their financial or family circumstances, evolution of their academic interests, and/or growing self-awareness about their “best-fit” college environment.

If you are considering transferring to a different college, what are your chances of acceptance? According to NACAC’s “Special Report on the Transfer Admission Process,” published in April 2010, “the average acceptance rate for transfer applicants was slightly lower than the rate for first-year students (64% versus 69%).”  For first-year freshman admission, public and private colleges had equivalent acceptance rates; in contrast, transfer admission rates were less favorable for private colleges (62%) than for public colleges (70%).

In order to learn more, Collegiate Gateway conducted its own research, evaluating about 100 four-year colleges that are among the most popular colleges for freshman admission among our students, and compared the transfer and freshman admit rate. For ease of comparison, the higher (more favorable) admissions rate appears in red.

Public Institutions: Most public institutions have a higher (or more favorable) transfer admit rate than regular admit rate.  These schools tend to receive thousands of transfer applications:


# Undergrads

# Transfer Applications

Transfer Admit Rate

Freshman Admit Rate

SUNY Binghamton 12,356 4905 48% 40%
Univ of Connecticut 17,528 2278 59% 54%
UCLA 18,503 3169 43% 34%
Univ of Florida 32,776 5996 41% 38%
Univ of North Carolina 18,503 3169 43% 34%
William and Mary 6,171 929 44% 34%


There are always exceptions to the rule, and a few exceptions of public institutions with a lower transfer admit rate than freshman admit rate include: University of Colorado, with a transfer admit rate of 64% vs. a freshman admit rate of 78%; University of Michigan, with a transfer admit rate of 35% vs. freshman admit rate of 41%; University of Wisconsin, with a transfer admit rate of 46% vs. freshman admit rate of 57%.  This could be attributed to the relatively high percentage of returning freshman at these colleges (84%, 96% and 94%, respectively).


Private Colleges:  Interestingly, most private institutions have a lower (or less favorable) transfer admit rate than regular admit rate. These schools tend to receive fewer than 1500 transfer applications:


# Undergrads

# Transfer Applications

Transfer Admit Rate

Freshman Admit Rate

Bowdoin University 1751 177 3% 20%
Colgate University 2,871 245 9% 33%
Haverford College 1,205 77 12% 26%
Middlebury College 2,516 424 6% 17%
Northwestern 8,600 1,435 12% 26%
Tulane Univ 8,423 1,475 16% 26%


Students seeking to transfer would be encouraged at the following relatively rare exceptions of private colleges that have a higher transfer admit rate than freshman admit rate. These include Connecticut College (36% transfer admit rate, 32% freshman admit rate), Elon University (56% transfer, 49% freshman), Emory (36% transfer vs. 32% regular), Northeastern (47% transfer vs. 38% regular), University of Miami (59% transfer vs. 44% regular), Vanderbilt (26% transfer vs. 20% regular), Wesleyan (28% transfer vs. 22% regular). Certainly, each of these institutions has a unique circumstance that encourages transfer students – a future blog may explore this further!


Most importantly, regardless of the statistics, you always have a shot at transferring to your dream school, if you engage fully in the academics and activities at college, strive to reach your potential, and become more knowledgeable about the college features that are a good fit for you.


Most Selective Colleges.  Students often seek to transfer in order to be at a more selective and academically challenging college. Here are the admit rates for a selected group of colleges considered to be among the most “elite” and academically rigorous. Note that freshman admit rate is higher than transfer admit rate for all these selective universities except Cornell. This could be attributed to the fact that all but Cornell are private institutions; of Cornell’s seven undergraduate colleges, four are public institutions within the SUNY system, and are especially welcoming to transfers.



# Undergrads

# Transfer Applications

Transfer Admit Rate

Freshman Admit Rate

Amherst College 1,817 509 4% 15%
Brown University 6,435 1867 5% 9%
Cornell University 14,261 3579 21% 18%
Dartmouth College 4,193 799 4% 12%
Harvard University 6,658 1486 1% 7%
MIT 4,503 443 10% 10%
Princeton University 5,336 Does not accept transfers 10%
Stanford University 7,063 1512 2% 16%
Swarthmore College 1,552 191 9% 17%
Univ of Pennsylvania 9,682 2096 9% 17%
Williams College 2,052 257 4% 20%
Yale University 5,405 970 3% 8%

*Information for Columbia not available


Whether you’re considering regular or transfer admission, the application process is ultimately about finding the right fit for YOU, so that you can get the most out of your college experience possible.  For more information and guidance, contact www.collegiategateway.com.

Part II: Leverage Your Social Media for College Admissions Success

Cleaning House: How to Tidy Up Your Social Media Footprint

In our last blog, we discussed why you should tidy up your social media activity in preparation for college admissions. Now, we’ll tell you how.

As The Telegraph suggests, googling yourself is a good place to start, as it will give you a good idea of what’s out there about you; any material you’ve published on Facebook using the public setting can be found by search engines. Likewise, if your Twitter account is public, your tweets and profile will also be visible to search engines.

Once you’ve seen how you are represented, it’s time to clean up your act . Here are a few useful tips to keep in mind when reviewing your various Facebook, Twitter and any other social media accounts. It’s important to treat these accounts as if they were virtual interviews – in some ways, they are. Ask yourself: “if my Facebook account were the only view the admissions office got of my personality, would I feel confident about my admissions chances?”


  • Set your privacy settings. Pay close attention to who’s allowed to see your wall, your photos, and your likes, as well as who can tag you in photos.
  • Clean up your pictures. For some long-time users, this will mean going back a few years in order to remove everything embarrassing and/or inappropriate. This true of both photos you’ve posted, and photos in which you’re tagged.
  • Start Un-Liking. Make sure you’ve only put your stamp of approval on appropriate content only.


  • Make sure your handle is clean and professional.
  • Delete old, inappropriate tweets. If you find that you’re deleting a lot, you may want to consider shutting down the profile altogether and starting fresh.

If you’re having trouble figuring out what is and isn’t appropriate, this article contains a few good examples of photos best left untagged. And if you’re in need of industrial-grade cleaning material to find and delete everything, the article also contains information about programs like FacebookScrubber (which deletes all your Wall activity) and AllMyTweets (which helps you locate past tweets by making them all available on one page).


Using Social Media to Your Advantage

When used effectively, social media can actually work to your advantage. Follow a college through its Facebook, twitter and blogs, to learn more about what the college offers and to interact with admissions officers. 95% of all colleges reported a presence on Facebook in 2012, ranging from 98% for private research universities to 92% for public research universities, according to the just-released 2013-14 Almanac of the Chronicle of Higher Education.  85% reported a presence on Twitter and 83% on YouTube. In an effort to capitalize on college admissions buzz, LinkedIn recently announced that it’s launching “university pages,” where schools can create profiles allowing current and prospective students to interact with each other.

In addition, use your own social media to communicate to colleges what’s important to you. For example, you might consider posting that album of photos from last summer’s community service trip to FaceBook. Or you could create your own website for the local business you’ve started, and then use twitter to promote it.

Remember – it’s often good to have a presence online, as long as that presence reflects the right things about you. Facebook and Twitter can provide an extra lens into your life and personality that don’t necessarily come through on a college application (that’s why admissions officers are interested in the first place); you can make a bad impression, or a good one. At any rate, it’s good practice for the future, as you’ll soon need to use LinkedIn to find internships and jobs.

For more tips on how to use social media to help bolster your chances of admission, have a look our previous blog, You Are What You Tweet: The Role of Social Media in College Admissions. And contact www.collegiategateway.com.

College Admissions Trends: 2013 Edition

For students and parents beginning the long journey that is the college admissions process, information is key. The more you know about recent trends, realities and expectations, the better prepared you are to tackle challenges and succeed in gaining admission to the colleges of your choice.

With that in mind, Collegiate Gateway has prepared a brief overview of the major trends in admissions, so that you can begin to prepare for the process ahead.

More Applications Mean More Competition

The number of high school graduates in the U.S. steadily increased for 15 years before peaking at 3.4 million graduates in 2010–11. Colleges have continued to receive record numbers of applications every year.  The Common App is now accepted at 488 schools, including the vast majority of selective schools, and the ease of the shared online application has resulted in students applying to greater numbers of colleges than ever before.  In addition, colleges are using outreach enrollment recruitment strategies to attract a more diverse applicant pool, including international students. The University of Southern California, for example, received more than 47,000 applications this year, up by 10,000 from just two years ago.

Yet, capacity at colleges has remained fairly constant.  As a result, acceptance rates have steadily declined. This is especially true among the most selective, “top tier” institutions. This year, every university in the Ivy League reported decreased acceptance rates from last year, the lowest being 5.79 % at Harvard. The only exception was Dartmouth, with an admit rate that inched up from 9.8% last year to 10.05%.

And the rates are just as low, and in some cases, even lower, outside the Ivies. The most competitive this year was Stanford, which accepted only 5.69 % of its more than 38,800 applicants. The University of Chicago accepted 8.8% of its record 30,369 applications, and MIT admitted just 8.2% of a record-high 18,989 applicants — a new low for the university.

There are other reasons for the ever-heightening selectivity. Colleges are themselves increasingly concerned about their rankings, and in some cases try to keep their acceptance rates low in order to appear more prestigious. In some cases, admissions officers will try to select only those students who are likely to enroll. These along with other factors add up to make the college admissions a complex, often unpredictable process.

The Ever-Expanding Waitlist

Increased applications, however, don’t just mean more rejections. They also mean a lot more students are winding up in College Admissions Purgatory, namely, on the waitlist. While the waitlist itself has been around for decades, their function has evolved in recent years, as colleges have had difficulty predicting how many of their accepted students will actually enroll. Both a necessity as well as a sort of consolation prize for highly qualified (but ultimately not qualified enough) applicants, the waitlist has expanded tremendously. A few years ago, more Duke applicants were waitlisted than admitted. 

Admitted, But Not For the Fall

A relatively new phenomenon among colleges (dating back to 2001 when USC first started the trend) is offering students admission, but not until the spring semester of their freshman year. While not a universal practice, the list now includes Skidmore College, Hamilton College, Brandeis University, Northeastern University, and Middlebury College. And while they all have slightly different ways of going about it (some do not let students enroll until the spring, while others enroll them right away, but place them in a fall semester program abroad, like Colby, or an alternative class schedule program like University of Maryland), the reason for this practice is the same: between freshman attrition and junior study abroad, campus populations decline in the second half of each year. Admitting more students for later in the year allows colleges to generate more tuition revenue.

The Big Picture: “Holistic” Admissions

The current state of intense competition among college applicants has influenced not only admissions outcomes, but also the admissions process – that is, the way colleges evaluate prospective students.  According to NACAC’s most recent State of College Admission report, establishing “fit” is more important than ever before, especially at private, small, and highly selective institutions. This has led to what many admissions officers refer to as a “holistic,” rather than “by the numbers,” evaluation process. While grades and test scores remain the top factors in admissions decisions for most colleges, schools are assigning increasingly greater importance to more personal factors that help to differentiate applicants. Colleges are increasingly looking for students who demonstrate qualities such as character, creativity, leadership, a sense of humor and moral fiber. This in turn means that those parts of the application that stand to reveal those qualities are becoming more and more important: your essay, letters of recommendation, extracurricular activities, interview and supplemental materials.

The Early Birds Get the Worm, Sometimes.

As mentioned above, application numbers are up, and early action/decision applications are no exception. In 2013, early admission programs continued to record double-digit increases in applicants. Boston University, for example, saw a 41 percent increase in early applicants, while Bates College rose 30 percent and Cornell rose 16.5 percent.

The reason for this is fairly straightforward: colleges, in order to better predict and control matriculation rates, admit large percentages of each incoming class from their early application pool; Columbia and Penn, for example, took 49.5% and 48.2% this year. This in turn, results in substantially higher acceptance rate among early applicants, for example 13.4% versus 5.2% at Yale.

The most important thing for students, however, is to remain focused and calm. While these statistics may seem daunting, with the right planning and guidance early on, you can – and will – end up at a college of your choice, where you can be happy, challenged and successful.

How To Study Business at Cornell?

Cornell University offers three strong options for undergraduate business education: the Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management (AEM) with the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS), the Industrial Labor Relations School (ILR), and the School of Hotel Administration.

Businessweek recently ranked AEM as the third best undergraduate business school in the US. Students can choose from a variety of practical and applied specializations ranging from entrepreneurship to finance to strategy, preparing them for a wide range of careers in business. AEM is uniquely situated within CALS, so students often combine their business degree with courses the life sciences and applied social sciences.

ILR explores the domestic and international workplace from a multidisciplinary perspective, with required courses in management, economics, psychology, history, law and government. ILR is the only undergraduate school in the US devoted to this field. Students enter a broad array of careers post-graduation with 26% going into human resources, 15% to business, and 13% to financial services (2011 ILR post-graduate report). Additionally, one-fifth go on to law school.

The School of Hotel Administration grants students a Bachelors of Science degree. In addition to the hospitality-related concentrations of HOLD (Hospitality Leadership) and SMOM (Services Marketing & Operations Management), students can major in FARE (Finance, Accounting and Real Estate) or pursue a Real Estate minor.  The curriculum balances theory and practice, with a requirement of 800 hours in a hospitality-related practicum prior to graduation. The majority of graduates enter the hospitality industry, and one-quarter go into real estate/consulting and banking/financial services (Hotel School post-graduate report).

On the graduate level, Cornell’s Johnson Graduate School of Management provides MBA and PhD. Degree programs. The 2-year MBA program features Immersion Learning, a semester of integrated course and field work.  The Johnson School provides opportunities for undergraduates to take courses and attend talks by leaders in business.

In exciting recent news, NYC Major Bloomberg selected Cornell and its partner Technion (Israel Institute of Technology) to develop a leading age NYCTech Campus on Roosevelt Island in Manhattan, a $2 billion project. The school will offer masters and doctoral degrees in technical fields such as computer science, information science and computer engineering, and will house the Technion-Cornell Innovation Institute. The unique partnership between NYC, Cornell and Technion is poised to make powerful advances in entrepreneurship and applied science education.