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Articles / Applying to College / Using the NACAC College Openings List

May 6, 2019

Using the NACAC College Openings List

Using the NACAC College Openings List
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I just looked at the NACAC list of colleges still taking applications and I would like to apply to a few. One of them (Bennington) already denied me. Is it possible to reapply now that they have openings, or is that not acceptable? Also, I saw that UConn has openings. I would like to apply there but only if they're taking applications for my major -- does the listing on the NACAC list indicate that they're accepting applications for the whole school, or are there usually only certain majors available?

Since you were already denied at Bennington, you should email your admissions officer (the staff member who oversees applicants from your high school or your state) rather than reapplying. You can find the staff assignments here, if you don't know who your counselor is.


In your message, explain that you were already denied but have seen that Bennington still has spaces open and you are very eager to enroll. Include a list of new achievements, new activities or honors, and improvements (in grades, test scores, etc.) since you initially applied. Also include a paragraph that explains why Bennington is right for you and vice versa. (Try to be specific; don't just say that there's a “good English department" or “a beautiful campus.") Also point out what you will bring to the campus with you ... e.g., leadership experience, diversity, special talent in arts, academics, or athletics, atypical skills). If you don't need financial aid, be sure to mention this too. “Full pay" status would be a big plus for you, although Bennington does still have aid available. So if you do require it, it's not a deal-breaker.

According to the NACAC College Openings list, UConn only has space available for transfers. Are you a transfer student? If so, I suggest contacting the admission office's transfer representative and asking about your particular major. It's very likely that there are vacancies in some fields but not in all, just as you've suggested. You can find your transfer officer here. Scroll through the staff photos until you see “Storrs (Main Campus) Transfer Admissions Officers," and then find your current college or state listed under a staff member's name.

Whenever you contact a school from the NACAC College Openings List, it can be helpful to say from the get-go that you will definitely enroll if admitted ... if indeed you will. And if you're not happy with the colleges that have already accepted you, take advantage of this helpful list to find additional places — perhaps not already familiar to you — that might be surprisingly great fits. Consider using the College Board's “Big Future" search to look for colleges that meet your preferences for major, size, location, etc. Then cross-reference your results with the NACAC roster.

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Written by

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone

Sally Rubenstone knows the competitive and often convoluted college admission process inside out: From the first time the topic of college comes up at the dinner table until the last duffel bag is unloaded on a dorm room floor. She is the co-author of Panicked Parents' Guide to College Admissions; The Transfer Student's Guide to Changing Colleges and The International Student's Guide to Going to College in America. Sally has appeared on NBC's Today program and has been quoted in countless publications, including The New York Times, The Washington Post, USA Weekend, USA Today, U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek, People and Seventeen. Sally has viewed the admissions world from many angles: As a Smith College admission counselor for 15 years, an independent college counselor serving students from a wide range of backgrounds and the author of College Confidential's "Ask the Dean" column. She also taught language arts, social studies, study skills and test preparation in 10 schools, including American international schools in London, Paris, Geneva, Athens and Tel Aviv. As senior advisor to College Confidential since 2002, Sally has helped hundreds of students and parents navigate the college admissions maze. In 2008, she co-founded College Karma, a private college consulting firm, with her College Confidential colleague Dave Berry, and she continues to serve as a College Confidential advisor. Sally and her husband, Chris Petrides, became first-time parents in 1997 at the ripe-old age of 45. So Sally was nearly an official senior citizen when her son Jack began the college selection process, and when she was finally able to practice what she had preached for more than three decades.

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