What to Do If Deferred

It’s officially December which means the first round of college decisions! Those who applied early decision, early action or through a sort of priority application will most likely be hearing from schools soon.

Some will get the answer they’ve been waiting for—acceptance! Time to wear that college sweatshirt with pride. Others will get an answer they were dreading—denial. While this can be disappointing, it can allow students to rethink their college lists and move on. And the last possible answer—deferral. This is a kind of “non-decision” that gives students a second chance at acceptance. But to really capitalize on that second chance, students need to be proactive to increase their chances of acceptance.

First, think about the likely reasons why you were deferred. Does your transcript show an increasing trend in grades? The school you applied to could be waiting for mid-year grades to confirm the trend continues. Ensure that trend does continue. Maybe consider asking a teacher to write a letter on your behalf validating your strength and hard work. Another reason could be that you maybe didn’t show enough interest in your early action school. Consider visiting the campus (if you can) or see if you can get an interview.

Take the deferral as an opportunity to tell the school more about who you are and why you believe they’re a good match. Write an email to the appropriate admissions officer at the school affirming your continued interest in attending their school and expressing your hope for acceptance in the regular round of admissions. If you feel it could help, consider following up with a phone call to ask if there is anything else you can do to improve your standing, then be sure to follow through with their suggestions. 

Don’t give up on the school, but take a look at your college options. There are so many schools that can provide the perfect fit for you.

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