Talking with parents whose children were waitlisted at one of their top college choices, a handful of words came up repeatedly: Limbo. Nightmare. Horror story. False hope.

Parent Julie Wolf had barely heard of waitlists before her daughter landed on three in spring 2019. The letters went something like this: “This year we saw more incredible applicants than ever before. You were among them. Congratulations! We are delighted to offer you a spot in the Class of 2023—if one opens up! We’ll be in touch after May 1.”

The waitlist is a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. An extraordinary but elusive tool called the Common Data Set can reveal waitlist numbers, but it won’t provide concrete answers about how to pry your way in from this precarious admissions perch. Julie Wolf talks to fellow parents in the latest post on the College Coach Insider blog about how to deal as a family with your child being waitlisted.

Written by College Coach
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