Preparing for College

Should Award Recipient Send News Clip to Admissions Offices?

Question: If i got an award and was honored at town hall for it, is it okay to send a copy of the article to the admissions?

Congratulations on your award. There are no hard and fast rules that govern newspaper article submissions, but here are the guidelines that I suggest:

-DON’T submit the article if it doesn’t provide much additional information about you and your achievement beyond the fact that you received this award. (You can update the colleges on the honor without sending the actual news clip.)

-DO submit it if you feel that it tells admission officials something about you and/or what you’ve accomplished that might have a favorable impact on your admissions outcomes and is not already available elsewhere in your application.

-DON’T send the article if it isn’t exclusively about you or at least primarily about you.

-DO consider the selectivity of the schools to which you might send it and evaluate the impact of the article there. In other words, at the Ivies and other hyper-competitive places, only a unique or exceptional honor would stand out in a crowd. Admission folks are already beleaguered by student folders that can be as thick as War and Peace. ;) So use your best judgment when deciding what to add to the overload.

Remember, you can report your honor to admission offices without sending the supporting news coverage, too. So check out the recommendations above before deciding how to proceed.

(posted 2/12/2011)