College Admissions: Dealing With Rejection

About this article
Rejection can be one of the hardest things to deal with during the college application process. This article provides advice to help students manage the stress of receiving a rejection letter.
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Before ever opening a letter from the college you applied to, you may experience some anxiety. Many others also have similar experiences. If you receive the little envelope, you may be dealing with rejection (unless the school has agreed to waitlist you) and, unfortunately, you may begin to question your self worth.

But do not despair. According to those at collegeboard.com, colleges have many reasons for rejecting students. Your academic standing is not the only factor in a school's decision. Colleges and universities must address the following items: their own needs for a diverse population, strength on sports teams and number of students allowed in a specific degree program.

The best thing to handle rejection is to apply to a variety of different colleges and universities. At collegeboard.com, research shows that nine out of ten students get into their first or second choice college. Persistence pays off - and so does filling out several of those lengthy college applications. Your second choice school is probably still a good fit for you even if it's not your first choice.

Another way to help increase your chances of being accepted is working hard. If you're still in high school, don't get 'senioritis.' While grades aren't the only thing colleges look at, a nose dive at the end of your high school career isn't going to help your cause.

So, what happens if you weren't accepted at any of the schools you applied to? Again, don't get down on yourself. First, if the letter of denial isn't clear, determine the reason for your rejection. Did you only apply to one school? Were the schools you applied to too selective? How are your high school grades?

Now is the time to re-evaluate you situation. If you can still apply to schools whose deadlines haven't passed, then look into that option. Also, consider junior colleges. These schools are usually the least selective of any colleges, and you can transfer your work to another school at any time. If you are dead set on getting in to one of the schools you applied to then do the following: reapply after you have corrected initial problems (check with that school's admissions office), or make an appeal to the school about their rejection decision.

Popular Schools

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    1. George Mason University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Education in Special Education, specializing in Applied Behavior Analysis
      • Master of Health Administration in Health Systems Management
      • Master of Science in Health Informatics
      • Master of Education in Special Education, specializing in Autism Spectrum Disorder
    Certificate
      • Applied Behavior Analysis Certificate
      • Autism Spectrum Disorder Certificate
  • Online Programs Available
    2. Georgetown University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Science in Finance
      • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management
      • Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate
  • Online Programs Available
    3. Purdue University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Science in Communication
      • Master of Science in Education in Special Education
      • Master of Science in Engineering Technology
      • Master of Science in Hospitality and Tourism Management
      • Master of Science in Education in Learning Design and Technology
    Certificate
      • Graduate Certificate in Strategic Communication Management
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    4. American University

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    Master's
      • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication
      • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication - Advocacy and Social Impact Concentration
      • Master of Arts in Economics
      • Master of Public Administration and Policy
      • Master of Science in Agile Project Management
      • Master of Science in Healthcare Management
    Certificate
      • Graduate Certificate in Agile Project Management
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      • Graduate Certificate in Project Monitoring and Evaluation
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    5. Judson University

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    Master's
      • Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership Online
      • Master of Business Administration Online
    Bachelor's
      • Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology Online
      • Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration - Entrepreneurship - Online
      • Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration - Human Resource Management - Online
      • Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration Online
      • Bachelor of Arts in Human Services Online
      • Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Leadership Online
    Associate's
      • Associate of Arts
  • Online Programs Available
    6. Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Arts in Health and Human Services Administration
      • Master of Arts in Human Resource Management
      • Master of Arts in International Development
      • Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership
      • Master of Arts in Special Education
      • Master of Science in Accountancy
    Bachelor's
      • RN to Bachelors of Science in Nursing
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    7. The George Washington University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • MSHS in Health Care Quality
      • Masters in Interdisciplinary Secondary Transition Services
      • Master of Arts in Education and Human Development in Special Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
      • Master of Arts in Education and Human Development in Educational Leadership and Administration
      • Master of Arts in Education and Human Development in Educational Technology Leadership
      • Master of Arts in Education and Human Development in Organizational Leadership and Learning
    Certificate
      • Graduate Certificate in Health Care Quality
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      • Graduate Certificate in Special Education for Culturally and Linguistically Diverse Learners
      • Graduate Certificate in Transition Special Education
      • Education Specialist in Educational Leadership and Administration
      • Graduate Certificate in E-Learning
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    8. Kaplan University

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    Doctorate
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      • MSCJ: Law
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    9. ECPI University

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    Associate's
      • Associate's - Electronics Engineering Technology
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    Certificate
      • Mobile Development
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    10. Johns Hopkins University

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    Master's
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    Certificate
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      • MS in Food Safety Regulation
      • Certificate in Science Writing
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Featured Schools

George Mason University

  • Master of Education in Special Education, specializing in Applied Behavior Analysis
  • Master of Health Administration in Health Systems Management
  • Applied Behavior Analysis Certificate
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder Certificate

What is your highest level of education?

Georgetown University

  • Master of Science in Finance
  • Masters of Professional Studies in Technology Management
  • Master of Professional Studies in Real Estate

What is your highest level of education completed?

Purdue University

  • Master of Science in Communication
  • Master of Science in Education in Special Education
  • Graduate Certificate in Strategic Communication Management

What is your highest level of education?

American University

  • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication
  • Master of Arts in Strategic Communication - Advocacy and Social Impact Concentration
  • Graduate Certificate in Agile Project Management
  • Graduate Certificate in Human Resource Analytics and Management

What is your highest level of education?

Judson University

  • Master of Arts in Organizational Leadership Online
  • Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology Online
  • Associate of Arts

What is your highest level of education completed?

Saint Mary's University of Minnesota

  • Master of Arts in Health and Human Services Administration
  • Master of Arts in Human Resource Management
  • RN to Bachelors of Science in Nursing

What is your highest level of education completed?

The George Washington University

  • MSHS in Health Care Quality
  • Masters in Interdisciplinary Secondary Transition Services
  • Graduate Certificate in Health Care Quality
  • Graduate Certificate in Multimedia Development

What is your highest level of education?

Kaplan University

  • Master of Science - DNP Executive Leader
  • MSCJ: Law
  • Undergraduate in Legal Studies
  • AASBA in Business
  • Psychology

Which subject are you interested in?