Regretting Your Early Decision?

Regretting Your Early Decision?

In a bid to secure a coveted place in college, many applicants end up making a hasty decision to apply for early decision. Motivated by the higher acceptance rates, it is not surprising that students feel pressured by these numbers to quickly settle on one college without weighing the pros and cons. Many students fail to understand that applying to college via early decision means that they are obligated to attend if accepted, and statistics have shown that students often regret their decision.

So what happens if you’re having cold feet and are regretting your Early Decision?

Discuss with the Admissions Officer.

Imperatively, the rule of thumb is to call up the office of admissions and discuss your predicament with an admissions officer. There are reasons why you are having doubts about your college, and these reasons may range from academic opportunities to housing conditions, or even the weather. Understand that the college views you as a great addition to the college community, and the admissions officer will be more than willing to answer your questions, quell your worries and to give you a more personal understanding of the school.

If you are certain that the college is still not a good fit, inform the admissions officer as early as possible. The earlier students withdraw their acceptance from the school, the quicker it will be for the admissions officer to replace you with an equally competent applicant. Again, some colleges may not be as accommodating to your recent defection, and may require you to stay committed to the institution. When this happens, an alternative will be to look at the financial aid package and compare it with your existing finances. If you and your family believe that you can get a better financial aid package from another college, discuss it with the admissions office and that might be your ticket out. Early decision is not legally binding. It is a commitment you make in good faith to attend the college to which you applied. If your finances make attendance impossible, then you are absolutely allowed to break your early decision agreement. No college wants a student there who is unable to pay tuition.

Again, these suggestions are not fool-proof solutions, and while it may have worked for some, it might not necessarily work for you. Perhaps what you should do if accepted into the early decision program, is to reflect on the reasons why you chose to apply to the college in the first place. These may be information from the prior research or alumni interview, interactions with the student body during school visits or even debates on college confidential. By recalling and reflecting on the reasons that spurred you in the first place, you can may gain insight and come to a realization that you are just experiencing a case of cold feet.

More importantly, enter college with the anticipation, expectation and giddy excitement, and enjoy your freshmen year. Give the college a chance to grow on you. If you are sure that the college is still not the right fit, your next game plan is to start working on the transfer application during your winter break.