Think Like A College Admissions Officer
You’re an admissions officer at a major university. For three very intense months, you spend somewhere between six and twelve hours each day reading applications — hundreds of them — from nice, well-meaning kids, and you have somewhere between 10 and 20 minutes to decide their fate.
In that time, you have to figure out who the student is, what makes her special, and what unique value she can offer the university. Unfortunately, as you flip through the files, you find the same molds repeating themselves, an endless succession of honors students and varsity athletes, math club members and science team leaders, all with good track records, but with little to help you distinguish what’s special.
Your vision blurs. You yawn, stretch, and toss another file into the 50/50 pile. You reach for another, wondering how much more you can take, when suddenly, you wake from your stupor, reading about a student with unique promise—an unusual combination of passion and talent who has constructed a rock-solid picture of who she is, what she loves, and what she wants out of life. Her unique experience will add value to your university in ways that no other student can, and her knowledge about your school proves how vested she is in creating her future. You feel a tingling, a thrill of pride as you place her in the acceptance pile, giving her a springboard into a promising future.
It’s moments like these that make the job worthwhile.