Takeaways From the 2020 Application Season, Part 3 (Last rant)


I know I signed off on my last post but I forgot one last thing that is different this year and it is a byproduct from the United States Department of Justice no less! The Department of Justice filed an antitrust suit claiming that the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC, of which I am a member) had anticompetitive college recruiting restraints. The NACAC Code of Ethics and Professional Practices created a “restraint of trade” among colleges, in their recruitment of students. In order to comply with the DOJ, NACAC changed the wording in their code of ethics. You can read about it in detail here.

What this did was allow colleges to change how they approach students for admission. What I specifically saw this fall was that students that applied to a college under the early action plan (non-binding) received a communication from the college asking them if they would like to convert their application to the early decision plan (binding). This action painted students into a corner. If they declined the option to convert their application would they seal their fate in the early action pool with a rejection letter? Did they like the college enough to commit to the binding plan? Would the college only accept them if the went ED? Were they weak in the EA pool but strong in the ED pool? Was ED the only way to get in? What if they wanted to wait and see how their financial aid or scholarships added up? This was a conundrum that left vulnerable teenagers making hard decisions and it left me shaking my head.

Now, I am off to go trim the tree. I will be back in 2020. See you next year!


Leave a Reply