Here’s What to Do If You Were Rejected From Your Top-Choice College
As colleges begin notifying applicants of their regular admission decisions, many students, especially those who applied to highly-selective universities with notoriously low admit rates, will be faced with their worst-case scenario: a rejection from their top-choice college. Receiving a rejection from a top-choice college can be crushing to students, but it’s not the end of the world.
Dealing With a Rejection
First, take some time to process the decision. Getting a rejection is never easy, and you’re bound to feel a lot of different emotions. Take some time to work through your feelings, but don’t spend too much time mourning.
Next, take a look at where you did get in! If you applied to a balanced list of best-fit colleges, you’re bound to have a number of accepted college admission decisions to choose from. Evaluate your different offers of admission, including any financial aid, and decide where you want to attend in the fall. This is a good time to revisit any research you have on the colleges where you were accepted, and even visit again if you have the opportunity before the May 1 enrollment deadline.
Many students will ask: Can I appeal my rejection? While there are a handful of cases where students have appealed and subsequently were admitted, it’s an extremely rare occurrence, and not worth your time. Generally, we advise students to accept a rejection and move on. You should want to attend a college that wants you!
Additional Resources for Rejected Students
Here are some additional resources for students who were rejected from their top-choice colleges.
- Rejection Hurts: How to Handle a College Not Accepting You
- How to Rebound If Rejected
- Should I Appeal My College Admission Decision?
- Strategies to Minimize the Blow of College Rejection
- Admission Decisions: What to Do If You're Accepted, Rejected, or Waitlisted
Here’s some additional advice for rejected students from IvyWise founder and CEO Dr. Kat Cohen. Click the image below to view the video.
Remember, while a rejection is disappointing, it’s not the end of your college plans. If you built a balanced college list with a mix of schools that are a best-fit for your needs and goals, you will have acceptances to choose from.
IvyWise Services for Rejected Students
At IvyWise we offer a number of services for students who were rejected from their top-choice colleges. In addition to counseling on which schools to attend based on where students were accepted, IvyWise can also help students plan for the transfer admission process should they chose to attend one institution then transfer after their first year. We also offer guidance on gap years and other alternatives for students who may need additional guidance before reapplying to colleges next application cycle.