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Learning From This Year’s March Madness

This past Thursday marked an annual frenzy of information in the college world. The Ivy League schools and several other highly selective institutions released their admissions decisions online. Anxious students around the country met their fate on Thursday night with tears of laughter d joy for some and, for others, tears of sorrow, regret and disappointment. The Choice, the college admissions and financial blog hosted by the New York Times, wrote a piece about this unveiling early on Thursday morning. While the blog entry is brief, the number of comments and responses are very telling of just how this process has weighed on the hearts, minds and souls of the high school graduating class of 2012.

If you are the parent of a high school student hoping to gain admission to one of these elite schools next year or sometime in the near future, take a few minutes to read through the comments. Feel the joy and the pain and then, when the conversations about college happen in your house, think about what’s really important to your son or daughter and how they will find success in their lives.

An Ivy League education can be an excellent one. But, so can an education at any school if you have a plan on how you are going to make the most of it. Lynn O’Shaughnessy of the College Solution wrote a great piece on this very idea back in January. I tend to agree with her – you can have an awesome experience wherever you go, but you have to be willing to go out and make it happen. Even at an Ivy League school.

If you have any thoughts you would like to share on your admissions experience this year or the adventure you are about to embark on, please use the comment box below. You can also email me directly at

Eric Dobler is the president and founder of Dobler College Consulting. Follow him on Twitter.

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