In today’s episode, Dr. Legatt discusses how to stand out after getting deferred.

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VO: Welcome to College Admissions Real Talk with Dr. Aviva Legatt, a podcast for students seeking to get admitted to top-tier colleges. Each episode will feature an important tip for your college admission success, delivered with candor and love. If you’ve ever wanted to take a peek inside the mind of a college admissions officer, this is your chance. Have a question? Text Dr. Legatt at 610-222-5762. So, what’s your dream school? 


AL: Welcome to College Admissions Real Talk. This is Dr. Aviva Legatt, founder and Elite Admissions Expert at Ivy Insight. Today, we are going to be discussing five strategies to stand out after you get deferred. First of all, I want to congratulate everyone who has been deferred. That may sound like a counterintuitive “Congratulations”, but hear me out. Seriously, if you’ve been deferred it shows that you are a very qualified applicant and gently there were not enough spaces to admit you. However, I also want to offer my condolences because getting a defer decision is sometimes more difficult than a rejection because you’re still in that waiting pattern of “did I get in”, “did I not get in”, and you have some additional work cut out for you. So here are a few strategies that will help you to stand out so that you can maximize the possibility that you’ll be admitted after being deferred. Let me also share why a deferred decision happens. Primarily, it’s two reasons: 1. The admissions committee wants to see how you qualify compared to others in the regular decision applicant pool. The other reason is that there may be a gap in knowledge about your academic performance or personal qualities or something in the application sounded good, but something else was left to question. With that said, think about your application and make sure you have someone review it to ensure it was as good as it can be and then find the strategies that fit to help you either improve that application that you submitted initially or to help you build on the strong narrative you’ve already shared with the admissions committee. So, first, definitely don’t go silent. Make sure that you send the admissions officer and the admissions director an email to thank them for their thoughtful consideration of your application. Reiterate that this college or university is your top choice and why it is so. You can share this information in what’s called “a letter of continued interest”. A letter of continued interest will highlight any updates that you have to share since submitting the application, why the college or university is your top choice and your continued enthusiasm for joining this community. Second, think about another material you can send to the admissions office. Maybe, for example, you ran a recent webinar that was attended by a lot of people, or you interviewed a professor on YouTube. Any kind of visual or auditory material that you’ve created since submitting the application; it could be an article that you’ve appeared in or an article that you’ve written since the application or it could be something, like, a letter of recommendation that wasn’t included with the initial submission. So, think about that strategic material and what would best help your story for getting into that college. Third, after you send your letter of continued interest, if you do have any important updates, make sure that you send them to the admissions office in a timely manner. I’ve seen one university in this cycle ask for additional updates in February. So, for my student who submitted the letter of continued interest, they want an additional update the following month. So that is my recommendation. If you can provide a monthly update up until application time that should serve to help you to keep in touch with the admissions office. Four, definitely ask your college counselor or your guidance counselor to follow up with the admissions office on your behalf. One of the most important relationships that colleges have are with high school guidance counselors and college counselors. So, if your college counselor can write something, call someone on your behalf, it’s only going to help your case for admission. Ultimately, universities want to admit the best students possible and it wants to maintain great relationships with the high schools where they typically draw students from. So check that option out and see what your college counselor or guidance counselor might do for you. Fifth, definitely think about getting a letter of recommendation from a teacher or from a working professional. Make sure that this recommendation covers not only what an amazing person you are, but also why you are qualified for the specific university you’re looking to go to. Ideally, this person has some kind of connection with the university whether they’re an alum or whether they have taken a class there or know people at the university, have them speak to their knowledge of that university and their knowledge of you and why you would be an amazing choice for admission. So, those are my tips and strategies. Make sure that you implement these in a timely manner because admissions decisions don’t wait for anybody. So make sure that you don’t wait to make these updates. Text me at 610-222-5762 and let me know how it went.


VO: College Admissions Real Talk is hosted by Aviva Legatt, edited by Stephanie Carlin, and produced by Incontrera Consulting. I’m Caroline Stokes and this has been your daily boost of college admissions insight. Have a question? Text Dr. Legatt at 610-222- 5762. For more information on Dr. Legatt and Ivy Insight visit www.ivyinsight.com. And you can pick up Dr. Legatt’s book, “Get Real and Get In”, at major retail outlets across the world. Insight out.