The College Solutions Blog

Valuable insights from Lynn O’Shaughnessy
a nationally recognized college expert.

Featured image for “Looking beyond highly rejective colleges to get better deals”
April 13, 2021

Looking beyond highly rejective colleges to get better deals

As usual, the highly rejective colleges** have attracted the most media attention during this latest admission season. The Ivies, Stanford, MIT, Duke, Northwestern, USC and other highly rejective colleges outdid themselves this year by crushing the college dreams of an historic number of applicants. What gets lost in this slavish attention to the nation’s highly rejective schools is the inside...
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April 14, 2014

An Angry Mom Rails Against Elite Colleges

Don’t become a victim of the college process like the angry mom you’ll read about below! A highly effective way to make college more affordable is to enroll in my upcoming course, The College Cost Lab. You can learn more about the class and enroll here. Lynn O’Shaughnessy I am sharing with you today an angry comment sent to me...
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May 15, 2012

The Last Colleges Left Standing

Today I am reprinting an article written by Lee Bierer, a friend of mine, who is a nationally syndicated columnist and independent college counselor in North Carolina. Lee writes the Charlotte Observer’s weekly Countdown to College column, which is syndicated nationally to McClatchy Newspapers. I asked Lee if I could reprint her column because it reinforces what I’ve been saying...
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December 5, 2010

Should You Attend Your Dream College?

This is the time of year when high school seniors and their parents begin reciting this age-old advice:  Follow your dreams. Families tend to use this advice to justify their children attending expensive dream colleges even if these schools will require taking on crushing student debt. I am a huge advocate of families researching schools before hand to see if...
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May 16, 2010

College Wait Lists Run Amuck

Has it become a status symbol to end up on a college wait list? During a fundraiser at my son’s high school last night, a mother shared with me that Duke University had waitlisted her son. She appeared to be bragging when she shared this news. I didn’t have the heart to tell her that Duke had also placed 3,382...
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April 18, 2010

Waiting List Cry Babies: Stop the Tears

I have been reading the annual sob stories from students who are stuck on waiting lists at the nation’s snobbiest schools. These are the colleges and universities that reject almost everyone. The students on these waiting lists, which can contain 1,000 or more names, complain mightily about being stuck in limbo. They can’t psychologically get on with their lives until...
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September 20, 2008

Gaming the System: College Legacy Admissions

Everybody knows how ridiculously hard it is to claw your way into an elite school like Harvard, Princeton or Notre Dame. Every year though plenty of students who possess lower grades and less impressive resumes find a way to game the system. What’s their secret? They’ve got the right parents. Schools hate to talk about the students who saunter through...
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