Luke (and Mary Jo) have finished the college application process. The final group:
- Georgia Tech
- North Carolina State
- Colorado School of Mines
Now comes the financial aid paperwork, and then the waiting. By late December (for a couple of them), or early in the year (for the rest of them, Tech being Jan. 10), we should know where he’s been accepted. Then he just has to make the choice.
For the past couple years, at least, we’ve been inundated with pitches from schools. Mostly mailbox stuffings and emails. Last Tuesday, we got 12 in the box (above). Pushing everything from their beautiful campuses to school clubs to their cafeteria food to their school spirit to the cities they’re in and the brilliant work being done. Every school, it seems, is where you, LUKE, would fit perfectly.
I’m guessing we got little invitations to apply/visit from 100 schools over the past couple years. Maybe more.
The reason we got so many — I realize I’m slipping into first-person once in a while — has less to do with the brilliance of the boy, of course, than big bucks. It costs a minimum of $60 to apply to these schools. Some are $75. Some may be a tad more. Whatever, application fees are big money for these colleges.
Tech, for instance, had 27,270 applicants for the 2015-16 school year.
So, yeah, it’s probably worth a glossy postcard or 10. And, of course, when half of those applicants (or a third, in Tech’s case) end up matriculating, spending $15- $20- $50,000 a year on tuition, room and board, I’m thinking that’s probably a good use of stamps.
(For whatever reason, the School of Mines in Golden, Colo., didn’t charge an application fee. So Luke applied, though he probably won’t go there. He liked Denver a lot when were there a few years back, but Mines is a small, nearly only-engineering school, and Luke wasn’t that thrilled with it. Still, no cost, no obligation.)
(It did cost to apply to MIT. And Luke probably isn’t going there, either. MIT is what’s known as a “reach” school for Luke. He has great grades, he did really well on the tests. But that’s generally not good enough for MIT. Example: On MIT’s application, there is a place for the kid to list the academic studies and papers he’s had published in professional journals. Luke had to leave that one blank.)
The wonderful counselors at Luke’s high school — and Luke has a good one — tell us that most kids apply to somewhere between 5-10 schools. So Luke’s right there.
Now, it’s wait and see. Luke already has threatened to coast through the rest of his senior year. (That ain’t happening. But I understand the sentiment.) Instead, he will jump right back into it; homecoming is next weekend, and classes and tests and his girlfriend and buddies and mid-terms and you name it. He probably won’t give another thought to college — except for that financial stuff that has to be done — until the letters of acceptance/rejection start coming in.
Which is OK. Because, by this time next year, he’ll be a college freshman. And there’s no need to hurry that.