College Rejection Letters

Graduates
Graduates


The final year of high school is riddled with distractions: "Senioritis," hormones and emotional turmoil at a time when major decisions, challenging academic courses and community commitments must be fulfilled.

There are few students who know exacty what career to chose and which colleges to apply to, but after much consideration and planning, decisions are made, college applications and essays are careful written (and rewritten) and finally submitted to the colleges of choice.

Spring arrives and the long anticipated college letters arrive in the mail. After such a build-up, a letter of rejection can be a devastating blow. No matter how confident your teen may be, a rejection letter from the college of choice, is a hard pill to swallow and can lead to some serious angst.

If this happens to your teen, take heart and let them know that they are in extremely good company. Past "rejectees" include Nobel laureates, billionaires, university presidents, constitutional scholars, best-selling authors, leaders in business, media and the arts.

A rejection letter isn't the end of the world, and could be the beginning of a wonderful future. After all, the name and prestige of a college says nothing about the inherent character and potential of the student being rejected. Rather, it is qualities such as compassion, tenacity, work ethic, enterprise and talent that lead to a fully-rounded and contributing member of society.

The rejection letter isn't personal, although it feels very personal. The selection process is complex and isn't just based on test scores, GPA's and admission essays. The students first choice colleges are usually based on reputation, location and family desirability; however parental disappointment shouldn't overshadow the students ability to adapt and be proud of any college they may be accepted into: (It is important to trust your teen's choice over your own).

Take for example Leigh, a Tampa Bay resident, who attended Manatee High School in Bradenton. He left school 6 years ago with 32 Advanced Placement credits, but because of his family finances was unable to attend a college of choice. He stayed at home and took full-time employment as a 911 dispatcher for the Police Department. During this time, he enrolled at the local community college and earned an AA degree, then commuted to continue his education whilst still working his day job.

Leigh worked at the police department for 6 years and during that time obtained 2 Bachelor degrees with almost perfect GPA's. He then sat the LSAT's and scored so well he was accepted into Duke Law school. Today he maintains top grades and has an exceptionally bright future ahead of him.

Leigh's mother says "Adversity isn't always a negative. Having a financial safety net isn't the prerequisite for bringing out the best in our young people. We all value the things we work hard for, more than things that come easy, (or are forced and expected of us).

What is important is that teens find an inner strength necessary for success in all areas of life, rather than cruise across the surface of potential, without immersing fully in the adventure of who they are truly capable of becoming. If everything is handed on a plate, or goes according to plan, there isn't the same need to mature and grow."



How did your college acceptance or rejection letters affect you?

  • Got accepted to first choice
  • Recived a rejection letter but it had no profound effect on me
  • Received a rejection letter to first choice college and it hurt!
  • Managed to dismiss the rejection letter immediately and go with 2nd or 3rd choice
  • Didn't bother going to college
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Comments 13 comments

petermdhart profile image

petermdhart 6 years ago from Cornwall, UK

There's nothing more hurtful to the spirit than rejection. Your hub explains that college rejection letters are not personal although they feel like it. It's also important to note, as you did with your example, that the undergraduate college name and prestige isn't as important as the student's tenacity and drive.


brightforyou profile image

brightforyou 6 years ago from Florida Author

I agree wholeheartedly petermdhart. Thanks for your insightful comments!


green tea-cher profile image

green tea-cher 6 years ago

I really like two statements in your hub - "Adversity isn't always negative" and "if everything...goes according to plan, there isn't the same need to mature and grow". A rejection although disappointing is a perfect starting point to head in a new direction. Great Hub!


brightforyou profile image

brightforyou 6 years ago from Florida Author

Thank you green tea-cher - I'm looking forward to reading more of your hubs!


deepthinker76 profile image

deepthinker76 6 years ago from South Carolina

great hub..i enjoy your writing. :)


Mr. Happy profile image

Mr. Happy 6 years ago from Toronto, Canada

A rejection letter just means you don't fit that specific "scenario". Universities have their specific strong points too and look for people to fit those "areas". Perhaps getting a handfull of all rejection letters might be something to worry about but other than that, it's all good.


brightforyou profile image

brightforyou 5 years ago from Florida Author

Thank you deepthinker76 for your comment - sorry it took me so long to reply - I have just seen it!

Hi Mr. Happy, again I am so sorry I didn't see your comment sooner and reply; Yes, you are absolutely right there are specific and generic reasons why certain kids don't get accepted (regardless of their grades). My son received one rejection letter and five acceptances, and it was the one rejection letter that had fairly profound affect on him and also three of his friends who had wanted to go to the same University. This prompted me to dig deeper and I did some research in order to write this hub. As mentioned in the hub, they go through so much that last year at school and have so much expectation placed on them at school (and inside themselves - and maybe parental pressure) that even one rejection is enough to send them into a bit of angst!

Thanks for your contribution to this hub, I really appreciate it!


Maria Speight 5 years ago

This was beautiful and great practical advice. Thanks for following me. This is the first of your articles I've read and if they are all written with this much grace and strength, I look forward to it!


brightforyou profile image

brightforyou 5 years ago from Florida Author

Hi Maria Speight, thank you for your very kind comments. I look forward to reading more of your hubs and welcome to hubpages! :-) Helen


Ebower profile image

Ebower 5 years ago from Georgia

This was very encouraging and true. I liked how you added a specific and personal example. I voted this up and useful! :)


tsmog profile image

tsmog 4 years ago from Escondido, CA

Very insightful. Grades alone on papers are very disheartening to students of all ages. Through my workplace co-workers are studying at the local community college trying to gain entrance into a larger school. Doing this while working and supporting a family at times.

For teens a rejection letter could be a life altering experience. Especially if it is to the school your friends are accepted and going to. Change occurs in many ways.

The encouragement of your message is heartfelt and inspiring. Thank you for sharing.


brightforyou profile image

brightforyou 4 years ago from Florida Author

Hi tsmog, thank you for your comments and I'm glad you found the hub inspiring! :-) Helen inspiring!


Smith 4 years ago

Life is already hard and getting more difficult and to put these high school students through these rejection will discourage some for life. My daughter is an honor student doing AP classes and worked very hard.Now she got rejected from the colleges she wanted to go. It makes our lives miserable because she does want to do anything. America needs to do more for children born in the US with parents who are working had to give them a better life.

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