Ivy Interviews

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Discus: What Are My Chances?: February 2003 Archive: Ivy Interviews
By josh on Wednesday, February 05, 2003 - 06:30 pm: Edit

What are the point of alumni interviews? I have applied to Yale and I recently did my interview with an alumni. Don't get me wrong, the interview was great and I enjoyed it, but I was just wondering why exactly they do such interviews. Nearly all applicants get an interview b/c they are given by location. I know that the interviewer fills out a report following the interview. Is this sort of like a judgement of personality used in the admissions decision process or are the interviews simply for providing applicants with realistic information about Yale? Do the interviews have anything at all to do with admissions?

By f on Wednesday, February 05, 2003 - 10:43 pm: Edit


By sir on Wednesday, February 05, 2003 - 11:04 pm: Edit

I recently had an interview as well. From what I hear, these interviews carry very little weight and are only considered if you're borderline.

By learn to talk on Thursday, February 06, 2003 - 11:17 am: Edit

Well, consider this: Ivy interviews are given to weed out those who cannot speak correctly from those who can. For example, your first sentence in this post, "What are the point of alumni interviews?" If you knew how to speak correctly you would have said, "What is the point of alumni interviews." Plain and simple. You do not belong at an ivy league school if you can't even speak proper english.

By To dumbass: on Thursday, February 06, 2003 - 03:08 pm: Edit

Learn to talk:

You forgot to put a question mark after your correction of Josh's first statement. You also didn't capitalize "Ivy League" or "English" in your last sentence. Both are proper nouns. Good thing there isn't a writing part of the application process. Oh yes, there is...THE ESSAY! Looks like you do not belong, either, smartass.

By josh on Thursday, February 06, 2003 - 03:09 pm: Edit

Well, consider this: It must take a real low life to simply browse forums and correct typos. BTW I typed that sentence; I didn't speak it. Your post should have been "learn to type". Sorry for not being an English major.

By rayale on Thursday, February 06, 2003 - 03:52 pm: Edit

learn to talk is gay. im going to yale and he isnt. and josh will probly do well too. learn to talk sux!

By learn to talk on Thursday, February 06, 2003 - 06:52 pm: Edit

You are right, I am not going to Yale. However, I have been admitted to Columbia, so I really could care less.

By Thedad (Thedad) on Thursday, February 06, 2003 - 07:03 pm: Edit

Not to step into the middle of a pissing contest,
but you mean "so I really _couldn't_ care less."

I'd blow this thread off except that my daughter
is considering Columbia and your presence probably
isn't one of the assets.

josh, the interviews seem to be looking for things like "spark", things like intellectual curiosity versus diligence and ambition. It appears to
be highly random by interviewer though and I've heard stories that some Admissions officers pay attention to remarks from interviewers they trust and blow off the ones they don't.

By hey on Thursday, February 06, 2003 - 07:18 pm: Edit

Thedad: Are you saying that schools prefer "intellectual curiosity" over "diligence" and "ambition?" Shouldn't an applicant have both? I believe that being a hard-worker is something that colleges would value. BTW, out of curiosity, could I ask where you attended college? You seem like sort of an expert around here, and I was just wondering.

By jane on Friday, February 07, 2003 - 01:35 pm: Edit

rayale, where are you from? you sound familiar.

By mo on Friday, February 07, 2003 - 01:40 pm: Edit

i have an alumni interview for princeton scheduled for next week. he told me it would not be an evaluation but "a chance to answer any questions you or your parents may have". is this true? can anyone tell me about their interview experience, what kind of questions they ask, what i should expect. do they tape the conversation and send in a transcript of it (i've heard that to happen at some schools) or what.

By mo on Saturday, February 08, 2003 - 01:02 am: Edit


By Eanderso1 on Saturday, February 08, 2003 - 10:36 am: Edit

lol@ COULD care less!

By Thedad (Thedad) on Saturday, February 08, 2003 - 11:56 am: Edit

to hey, sorry, I thought I'd posted a response the
other day.

"Diligence" and "ambition" defines a lot of plodders.
The high-end colleges are looking for something
more, students who will contribute to the fabric
of the university community. "Diligence" is
merely doing all your assignments well and on time;
it does not reflect anything of intellectual
thirst, or creativity, or of active engagement
with the intellectual world.

As for ambition, lots of kids playing endless
games of pick-up basketball have ambition to
be an NBA star. Ambition may be necessary but
it's scarcely sufficient.

By ivyinterviewer on Monday, February 17, 2003 - 12:07 am: Edit

Your Princeton interview was evaluative, Mo. Hope you aced it!

By Princeton___Hopeful on Monday, February 17, 2003 - 01:11 am: Edit

I still am not quite clear on how much these interviews actually matter. My past few interviews went spectacularly. My last one even lasted two hours, with the interviewer remarking several times how much of an asset I would be to his university (Yale). He used to be the Pres. of the local chapter of alumni, but would this actually make a difference? I am thoroughly confused.

By ivyinterviewer on Monday, February 17, 2003 - 02:23 am: Edit

A two hour interview? That's ridiculous and inappropriate. They should be one hour max. Usually interviewers are given guidelines about this. Sometimes the old duffers get carried away. Alumni club officer status shouldn't make any difference. Those jobs are rotated all the time, plus the alumni interviewing is usually a separate entity from the club. (Although they do frequently overlap, i.e. club will fund summer get-together for incoming freshmen, etc. Well, if there is a club in the area. Sometimes there is just alumni interviewing.) I'm sure your interview did go spectacularly, Princeton Hopeful. Note, however, that most interviewers do treat the interviewees kindly, tell them they hope they get in, etc. That's manners...but usually it is heartfelt. I like and am impressed by most of the kids I interview, and I do hope they get in. Most will not, though. Do these interviews actually matter? It depends. Some interviewers have more credibility than others. Really young interviewers tend to rate applicants way too high. Really old interviewers can seem out of touch. Neither instance would be harmful to an applicant's chances, however. Mostly, though, I don't think the interviews make much difference--especially for the garden variety upper middle class candidate. It's a different story for the first generation applicants from under-resourced schools. They don't come to me "packaged", so I have to do a bit of that for them. They tend to highlight their membership in National Honor Society and downplay the 30 hour per week job washing dishes. Or they say they have no extracurricular activities, when in fact they are the primary afterschool childcare providers for younger siblings. I have to ferret all this out. And, yes, I think in such instances the interview can be helpful to the candidate. That's not to say, however, that the interview cannot be bombed. It can be bombed, and bombing can affect your chances of getting in. Know how you bomb it? Lie--or rather, get caught lying. Plain ole bs-ing doesn't come across too well either. A kid once told me his favorite book was HEART OF DARKNESS. I said, "Great! I hate that book. Let's discuss." Would have been fun, meaty discussion, too...if he'd read it. Oops. Unfortunately, that sort of thing happens more often than it should. I'd also try not to sound racist, homophobic, or excessively fond of drugs and alcohol. If you were able to dodge all those bullets, I'm sure you did just swell.

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