While admissions officials at the University of Chicago appreciate the desire of children of alumni to attend their parents' alma mater, the school has no official policy on granting preferential treatment to legacy applicants, as noted in the student-run Chicago Maroon today.
AdmissionsConsultants, Inc.'s David Petersam, who is
also a Chicago alumnus, MBA '96, was interviewed for the article, and asked how legacy applicants should factor
their family connection to the school into their applications.
David Petersam, president of consulting firm AdmissionsConsultants, said legacy does not play as large a role as people tend to believe.
At most, legacy shows that a student is sincerely interested in a school, he said.
“When you’re crafting your essay, you have better reasons for why you want to go there,” Petersam said. “The admission office knows that if they offer you a place, there’s a greater chance you’re interested. People don’t always understand the process, and so it’s an easy reason to latch on to, but it’s not well-founded.”
The article also included comments from the
school's dean of admissions and alumni association director. While the dean encouraged interested legacy applicants to note their connection to the school on applications, the alumni director said that once the admissions process is underway, students must make it on their own merit.
Petersam launched AdmissionsConsultants in 1996. Prior to his MBA studies, he was a Certified Public Accountant. He has been quoted on college and graduate admissions in The New York Times and other key newspapers and t.v. and radio programs.
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