Tuesday, March 28, 2006
Decision Day
Apparently at 7pm this evening Northwestern went live with their regular decisions admissions. For the class of 2010. While this is scary enough in its own right, the real amazement is in just how much things have changed in the last 7 years.

When I applied back in '99 there was no such thing as an online application. I was lucky enough to score a cd, from the princeton review I believe, that had applications that could be opened in adobe. Some people actually had to pay to get the cd. Of course, all it really meant was that the applications could be printed out at home instead of waiting for the catalog to arrive. Only those who somehow had a full copy of Adobe could add fields and actually type directly onto the applications.

The following year marked the first real foray into online applications for many schools. Still though, acceptances came as a big envelope in the mail, not as an email or through a website.

By the time I graduated, a majority of applications were being submitted online, and email acceptances went out for the first time (to select people who had said in their application they wanted it sent via email).

And now, three years later, most applications are done online. Students know down to the minute when they can hop on the web to find out if they got in, and kids are scrambling to find internet cafes in spring break locales just to check if they got into a school, rather than waiting an hour for a phone call on the omnipresent cell phones from a parent who 'just couldn't wait' for them to get home.

And yet despite the changes, the feelings are the same. The desire for acceptance, and the hope that there will be a place for them somewhere. The class of 2010 is undoubtably more connected with each other already than any previous ones (as evidenced by the growing number of facebook groups solely for its members), but they will still all be in the same scramble to find friends, a companion, a niche, when they arrive on campus this fall.


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