The Beacon Bolt is a publication of the student body of Northwest Christian University. CBS reported on April 1, 2016 that Ivy League schools are getting harder to get into than ever before. Harvard is the leader of the pack, accepting record low of 5.3% of this year’s 37,307 applicants. Many other Ivy League institutions are following suit, including Columbia University, accepting only 6.1%. The chances of getting into such a school are so low, these universities are only in the market for high-achieving high school seniors. Those applying make the decisions extremely hard on the admissions staff with increasingly strong academic credentials. Admissions director, Marlyn E. McGrath says, “More than 16,000 of the applicants scored above 700 on the SAT math test, for instance, while 3,000 were ranked first in their high school classes.”
High school students are paying small fortunes to have special coaches and teachers to make them into ideal candidates for these Ivy League programs. So what’s all the fuss? Why are teens dying to get in? It is statistically shown that gaining admission to Ivy League schools is a ticket to gaining a higher step on the socio-economic ladder. The Washington Post’s Christopher Ingraham published an article on September 14, 2015 showing the annual salary difference between Ivy League grads and all other grads. After ten years of working, studies show that “The median annual earnings for an Ivy League graduate 10 years after starting amount to well over $70,000 a year. For graduates of all other schools, the median is around $34,000. But things get really interesting at the top end of the income spectrum. The top 10 percent of Ivy League grads are earning $200,000 or more ten years after starting school. The top earners of other schools, on the other hand, are making just a hair under $70,000.”
In comparison, NCU’s website even states, “The median salary for an NCU graduate a decade after enrolling is $38,500 per year.”
The devastating truth that thousands of applicants realize every year is that even with perfect grades, test scores and extra-curricular activities it’s still almost impossible to get in. Cornell University currently has the highest acceptance rate of all Ivy League schools, with a 14.9% acceptance rate. In the fall of 2014 the rolling acceptance rate here at NCU according to US News was 71.9%. So while it’s great to strive for the best, if you’re one of the many students who receive a rejection letter from an Ivy League school, you’re not alone. There are a lot of other options such as smaller colleges with higher admission rates, but I hope wherever you end up, you can have pride in your university.
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