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Expect the Unexpected

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This fall has certainly given the northeast a run for our money. We had a hurricane that was nicknamed Frankenstorm, as much for its proximity to Halloween as its size and potential for destruction. Unfortunately, the Frankenstorm lived up to it hype. Barely getting over the disruption of Hurricane Sandy we were hit with a Nor’easter that brought snow and to some places, more power outages. Schools just getting back after Sandy had snow days.

What does this have to do with college admissions? Because of the timing of these storms, plenty.  As regular readers of my blog may note, I put up a hastily written blog on Oct. 26 urging students who had November 1 deadlines to try and submit their applications before an anticipated loss of power and internet service. Although many colleges did extend their deadlines, it is not a guarantee that this will always happen.

To add to this, some students who had planned to take the November 3 SAT found that their test dates have been delayed due to issues with testing sites. The NY Times has a list of colleges that are making allowances for students who will be delayed in taking subject tests that normally would have been acceptable for early deadlines.

The lesson here is to expect the unexpected.  My advice to my students is to get everything ready to go well ahead of time.  This is important not only for big weather events but in general too. We live in an online application world where getting your application packet to the post office to be postmarked by the deadline is a thing of the past. Waiting until the absolute deadline is taking a chance that everything aligns just so. The computer is working, the electricity is flowing and the internet gods have been kind. This generally is the case, but barring big national or regional disasters, there are no exceptions to late applications at many colleges.

Janet Rosier

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