Things That May Piss off College Admissions Officers

Going to college can be considered a gift.  Not all people have the drive or the resources to attend post-secondary school, and those that do still have to get through the admission process.  If you are planning to go to college, one of the biggest obstacles in your way is getting the admission committee to accept your application.  As such, you probably wouldn’t want to upset the admissions officers, or get on their bad side.  Here are a few things to avoid when dealing with your application and the admission committee:

Sending too many letters of recommendation

Some applicants tend to send a bunch of letters of recommendation, thinking that more recommendation letters will help convince the admissions officers to accept them.  Most schools ask for a specific number of recommendation letters for each applicant, usually around two or three letters.  Exceeding the number of required letters will only hurt you.  Make sure that you get letters from people whom you think will give you the best, recommendations and send those along with your application package.  As much as possible, try not to exceed the maximum.(1)

Trying to be too poetic on your letters and essays

Take a look at a bunch of personal statement examples, and you will find that most authors steer clear from sounding too wordy or poetic.  You admission essays and letters to the admission committee should be of excellent quality, but that doesn’t mean that you should try to be poetic or extremely literary.  Trying to make your letters and essays too poetic may can backfire.  Admission committees are used to reading essays and letters, and they know when applicants are trying too hard.  Study and emulate the language use of personal statement examples.  Keep your objective in mind and the content within the context of your college application.(2)

Be sure to take full advantage of good examples of personal statement, because they can help you compose a concise, comprehensible, and compelling letter or essay.  You may even want to compare your essay to an example of personal statement online to see how you measure up to the standards.

Sending a thick file, aside from the transcript

Admission committees already have enough papers to look through.  Sending a thick file with information that is either irrelevant or unnecessary will only add to the work and stress of the admissions officers.  Your application package should only be composed of what the admission committee actually requires from you.  Keep it simple and avoid swamping admissions officers with unneeded files and papers.(3)


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