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Applications, applications, applic....

March 8, 2011

Unlike most of you, I am not a voracious reader. However, that changes each winter out of sheer necessity. As Leslie wrote about in her latest blog, I am getting close to the end of reading season, which means I've almost read 1000 or so applications. To give you an idea of what that means in a person's life, here's an outline of a typical day for me anytime from January through March:

  1. Wake up, walk dog
  2. Eat cereal, think about applications
  3. Take shower, wonder if I remembered to push read applications through to "Ready for Committee" folder
  4. Drive to work while listening to NPR that mysteriously begins to sound like someone narrating a personal essay
  5. Get to work, read applications or call counselor about application or call student about application or review applications I'm about to present in committee or spend all day in committee discussing and making decisions about applications (or write blog about reading applications)
  6. Go to lunch. Eat food
  7. Back to work, repeat step 5
  8. Drive home, attempt not to drive into that big double-decker passenger application that is somehow driving on the highway
  9. Eat dinner while telling wife about my day, which entails...well, you know
  10. Sleep, dream about reading applications
*Note, for weekend days, simply remove "drive to work" and committee parts

I wish I was joking about the last item there, but I literally do go to sleep and have dreams where a personal essay or gpa calculation somehow manages to sneak into the mix.

It sounds stressful and perhaps horrible, and while indeed it can sometimes feel overwhelming, I want to stress that overall it's really not that bad. Why? Because I finally am able to get to know more about all those students I met earlier in the year. I get to see that not only were they cool in person, but they've done some really cool things with their lives (which never ceases to amaze me, because most of them have been around for only 17 years or so!). I also get to have my hope for the future reaffirmed a bit, because just when the news has almost gotten to me and convinced me we're all screwed, I remember that I just read about 1000 students who are coming up and are on the fast track to bringing super-awesomeness to the world. That's right, I said super-awesomeness.

And so I read on.

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Responses to this Entry

I am a sophomore at Padua Franciscan (OH), and have recently become interested in applying for Oberlin.
However, I don't have a very well English education. I have just been in US for about 8 months. Moreover, the SAT is coming up and i am memorizing about 10 words per day to catch up with American teenagers, which drives me crazy.
Does it matter a lot that i have to write a very profound letter application ?
I would be great that you can tell me.
Thanks in advance.

Posted by: Quan on March 8, 2011 4:22 PM

I wonder if application essays get in swordfights or diving contests or things like that in your dreams. *That* would be so distracting.

This line:

"I also get to have my hope for the future reaffirmed a bit, because just when the news has almost gotten to me and convinced me we're all screwed, I remember that I just read about 1000 students who are coming up and are on the fast track to bringing super-awesomeness to the world."

... is exactly why I love meeting prospective students. Other than current students, alumni, and other Obie-related people, they're my favorite people in the world.

Posted by: Ma'ayan on March 9, 2011 4:33 PM

Clearly Helena and I need to revive the Admissions "Sunshine Committee" to bring some energy back into the office!

You're almost done! Think about how wonderful it will be to watch the letters depart on the truck later this month!

Posted by: Patrick on March 9, 2011 11:15 PM

Any idea when the target date is to send out the letters? I'm so anxious I'm barely sleeping at night!

Posted by: Evan Cameron on March 11, 2011 7:57 PM

So nervous/anxious/excited for decisions to come out in the next few weeks. Hope the reading is almost done! :D

Posted by: Aisha Ferrazares on March 11, 2011 11:15 PM

When are the letters coming? I am quickly losing my sanity.

Posted by: Andrew on March 13, 2011 8:06 PM

Got a few things to respond to, which is great!

@Quan: That's quite the questions, and I'm afraid is a bit much to tackle here. My quick response is: the application essay is important, but it's not all we consider. We do take into account a student's background and situation. I'd recommend contacting us in the office to have a more in-depth conversation about it and so that we can steer you in the right direction.

@Ma'ayan: couldn't agree more

@Patrick: yes, the Sunshine Committee would be received with open arms, especially if you bring chocolate!

@Evan: we're planning on sending around the 25th, not much longer to wait. Please try to get sleep!

@Aisha: reading is coming to an end. Hope you've been well since the fall! Try not to be too nervous.

@Andrew: We notify around April 1st. I hope your sanity remains, it comes in handy from time to time.

Posted by: Jesse Hernandez on March 14, 2011 8:47 AM

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