Bragger Beware: Proper and improper execution of placing “hidden extracurriculars” in the college app
Recently, Howard Schultz, the venerable CEO of coffee behemoth Starbucks, was asked about job characteristics he looks for when hiring. “First off, I want to know what you’re reading, and then I’ll ask you why,” he says. Hypothetically, if the potential new hire were to reply, “Well, Mr. Schultz, back in high school, I started the “T. Wolfe Pack Club: I was the founder, president, and only member (hint hint, I have read every Tom Wolfe novel)” and stopped right there, odds are that the interview would end momentarily. The aforementioned parable, at its core, is an execution issue. Had the potential new hire continued to explain why he enjoys Wolfe novels and connected this passion with some related experience in the business world, he or she may have opened the door to a second round interview. The same could be said for placing similar quirky yet potentially applicant-killer extracurricular [...]
I think that volunteering on a political campaign is an excellent experience before college and/or during college. I’ve done all three and I can’t emphasize enough what a great experience volunteering on a campaign can be.
On Thursday, the New York Times ran an article describing a growing trend among senior citizens: sleep overs! After spending the daytime acquainting themselves with the facilities, retirement communities are offering prospective senior residents the opportunity to take in evening social events and the opportunity to spend the night. For senior citizens, this is a great way to gauge social life and other nuances associated with retirement homes that one could not glean from a brochure. Retirement communities are not the only institutions to offer this opportunity. Colleges do too! I dedicate this post to one of the great (and relatively uncelebrated) pre-college traditions: prospective student overnight visits! Why you should do it: College overnight visits offer prospective students (or more cutely known as, prospies) an unfiltered, in-your-face opportunity to experience collegiate social life in a way that guidebooks or facebook photos could never showcase. For example, such visits give [...]
A Wonderful Beginning When you start college, it can be easy to lose track of why you went there and what you’re really there for. Starting in college across the country, either I lost sight of that for a little while, or the reasons I went cross country weren’t the right ones. I was a freshman at Occidental, who was going to be a Political Science major in pursuit of a Law degree down the line because a law degree, even if I didn’t want to be a practicing lawyer, would be good graduate degree to have. It made sense on paper and when I answered my family and other adults with what I’d be doing at college. I thought it made sense to me. The problem was, I didn’t give half a damn about politics. I found it difficult to care about an American political system whose rules, classifications [...]
I’m not a sorority girl—but I am a girl who joined a sorority. And after spending many years as a true Greek life naysayer, I’m glad to say now that joining a sorority halfway through my sophomore year of college was one of the best choices I ever made. When I looked at colleges, ranging from large to small and from the East coast to the West, I never once considered the role of Greek life on the campuses. It simply did not matter to me because I assumed that I would never be interested in looking at sororities. The well-known stereotypes of members of sororities and fraternities—beer guzzling frat boys chased by desperate and ditzy sorority sisters—blinded me to any latent interest I may have had in Greek life when I started college. Then after my first year of college, things started to change. The group of friends I’d [...]