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Jonathan Oh Persuassive Essay: The Admission Process of The College and Applicants


The Admission Process of The College and Applicants’ Merit
The admission process is now done. The admission officers spent about a month to decide whom they let into The College. Out of fifteen applications, the admissions officers had to choose three. The complicated selection process included checking each applicant’s quality, which was very time consuming. After the process was done, the officers were asked to answer several questions about why and how the admission and financial aid process worked, how the selection system can be improved, through the point of view of merit matters (on the other word, color-blind). However, merit matters (or color-blind) in this process do not mean only one’s grades or standardized test scores. The dictionary definition of merit is: “the quality of being particularly good or worthy” ( The process of accepting students into The College requires checking not only one’s grades and standardized test scores, but also extracurricular, skin color, background culture, where she or he is from, and financial status, all facts that can affect the admission decision.
The admission officers were first asked, “Was the admissions and financial aid process legal?” (Dougherty 1). Since the importance of higher education is continually growing, the admission officers of The College have worked on the process very carefully. The college admissions process has become a serious and sensitive social issue. For example, in the “Grutter vs. Bollinger” case, which was brought to even the Supreme Court of the United States, Barbara Brutter, a female Michigan resident, filed the suit, “alleging that respondents had discriminated against her on the basis of race in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment” (Grutter vs. Bollinger). She also claimed “that she was rejected because the Law School uses race as a “predominant” factor” (Grutter vs. Bollinger). The admission officers of The College were aware of the importance of a fair, effective admission system, in order to prevent several complicated troubles.
They created the “Grand Total Rating” (GTR) system, which can grade each applicant’s academic achievement, extra curriculums, diversity, and legacy. Each section has a different scale: academic achievement section has one to nine points, extra curriculum section has one to nine points, diversity section has one to three points, and having legacy section has zero to one point. The seventeen admission officers of The College reviewed each student and transferred each student’s general qualities into statistic data through the GTR system. Obviously, a student with a higher GTR is more likely to receive the acceptance letter than an applicant with a lower GTR.
The reason why a student with a higher GTR point is “more likely” to get accepted is because the admission process and the financial aid process are two separated things. This is how the financial aid process worked: the admission officers calculated the “Grand Total Rating” (GTR) of each student, and then the financial aid officers would decide whether the applicant is worth spending money for and The College’s budget could afford each applicant, highly based on the applicants’ GTR points.
Unfortunately, The College is not a need-blind school, which means that each student’s financial status can be an important factor of the admission process. If the student does not seem financially able to afford The College, and The College cannot give enough money for the student to come to The College, the student may not get the acceptance letter. By the amount of the financial aid each student needed, the student might be considered after applicant who had the lower GTR.

Throughout the whole process, the officers have tried their best to make sure that every single step of the admission process was legal, effective, and “reasonable”. For example, one may argue that it is unfair to include diversity section on the GTR system. Yes, the officers did add “diversity”, which can indicate to students’ given, physical appearance, such as skin colors. However, the Supreme Court of the United States declared that “admissions program that gave special consideration for being a certain racial minority did not violate the Fourteenth Amendment (Grutter vs. Bollinger); in America, it is officially fair to count minorities’ skin colors in the admission office process of college. Furthermore, the skin color does not indicates only the given, physical appearance. Several thousand years ago, when humans did not have scientific transportations and lived in one area for several generations, skin colors meant more than simple physical appearance; it referred to the environment, religion, ideology, and culture. Even though the meaning of “diversity” has got weaker than ever, it still means one’s cultural background. When the College admission officers included “diversity” section on the GTR system, they wanted to have different kinds of students from different kinds of culture.
As another example, one may argue that it’s unfair that a student with a higher GTR point can be accepted after a student with a lower GTR point due to their financial status. The College is clearly a non-need-blind private educational institute, which surely states that it cannot afford every single student’s needs. It is very frustrating to reject a great student with many talents only because of his or her financial situation. However, if one can’t come to The College because he or she cannot afford it, why would the admission office want to send the acceptance letter to him or her? It sounds ideal and wonderful if the budget of The College could afford all the applicants; however, in reality, it is impossible. Furthermore, The College is a “private” institute and has a right to use its money to whatever it wants to use. The admission officers wanted the best results and balance they could have.

The new admission system worked. The officers sent the regular acceptance letters to four of the applicants and late-acceptance letters (waiting-list letters) to five of them. Out of the nine applicants who received the acceptance letters, three decided to enroll, a fact that makes the enrollment rate about 33.3%; it was the similar percentage to one the officers originally aimed for: 30%. The use of financial aid did not go over the limit. The amount of available financial aid is primarily $70,000, and the admission office spent only $55, 611 totals. These stats indicates that the new system did its job.
The new admission system accepted a variety of students. Caitlin Quinn, the first choice of all the officers, who is a white female student from California with wonderful academic achievement, decided to enroll. Jazmine Hope-Martine, a female student from Massachusetts with outstanding extracurricular experience, decided to enroll. Daniel Juberi, a white male student from Massachusetts, who is recruited as a men’s basketball player, decided to enroll. All the incoming students have strong academic ability; all of them were at least top 20% of the class rank. Juberi is from a public school, while Quinn and Hope-Martine are from private schools. Quinn is from the West Coast, while the other two are from the East Coast. The admission process this year, with a new system, helped The College accept students with different, great qualities.

However, there have been several points that could have been better. For example, the GTR system was a bit vague, especially about the diversity section. It was not clearly defined what “diversity” meant. It could have meant applicants’ skin colors, where they are from, how wealthy their families are, and what kind of different talents they have. The GTR system should have made it clear what the exact meaning of “diversity” was before it influenced the admission process. Before some applicants have questioning the vagueness of the diversity section, the officers should clarify it. If they do not define the exact meaning of “diversity”, the GTR system may have to face some conflicts due to its racial issue.
Also, the officers should have sent the acceptance letters to more than four students at the first place. The College eventually had 33.3% of the enrollment rate, which is not bad, but if the officers thought more realistically, the enrollment rate could have been a higher; once students are in the waiting list, they are less likely to enroll. The officers did not have enough time to prevent this waiting list issue. However, to improve the reputation of The College, they will have to spend more time carefully, creating new system that can prevent the admission process from overusing waiting list system.

Despite the grueling process, the admission officers of The College tried their best to achieve the best result possible to balance between the diversity, financial aid, academic quality of students, and school reputation. Not only because they wanted good grades from their boss, Jack Dougherty, but also because it was the job they wanted to do. There are several points that can be improved. There are several parts that must be better. However, the officers did great job to find new enrolling students, based on students’ merit, “the quality of being particularly good or worthy” (

Dougherty, Jack. “Persuasive Essay: Debating Policy in The College Simulation.” Color and Money. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Sept. 2013.
“Grutter v. Bollinger.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 09 Oct. 2012. Web. 28 Sept. 2013.
“Merit.”, n.d. Web. 03 Oct. 2013.