Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Book: Admissions Confidential

I received this book as a gift from my husband's aunt. Her daughter is currently a freshman at Princeton. At first, I thought this book was about giving parents tips on college applications. But it turned out the intention of the book was quite the contrary.

Rachel, the author, stumbled on a job as an admission officer at Duke University after being an editor at Oxford press. She described her first-year experience at Duke. It is a truthful recount of the whole college admission process. It was very personal for her and it revealed what was going on behind the scene.

The main point is sad. So many applicants look so much alike. They are called BWRKs, Bright Well-Rounded Kids. Who gets in and who gets rejected can be arbitrary. In the last chapter, Rachel went on to discuss whether it really matters where a person goes to college.

There are many funny and interesting stories in the book. It is a good read even for people who are not involved in any college applications. For me, the book gave me a refreshing break from all the technical books that I have been reading.

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