What an Admissions Committee (& Everyone Else) Is Looking For:

What an Admissions Committee (& Everyone Else) Is Looking For:

We all know about the perfect GPA, the perfect standardized test scores, the perfectly polished essays, and the coveted leadership experiences. Millions of kids across the country qualify. So how do admissions committees decide?


Pretty much the same way we do. How do we choose our friends? Who to date? Who to hire?  Where to apply?


Usually, we’re in the same classes, we like the same music, or we’re both on the debate team; we’ve studied the same business or have similar ideologies in some way or another. But it’s not just having stuff in common. If we look deeper, we generally pick people who are involved – engaged in something that makes their eyes light up when they tell us about it.


We like the lead singer in the band. We like the captain of the football team. It’s not because we’re into clichés. It’s because we like people who do things. We like people who invite and encourage us to do things.


So do admissions committees.

passion_get involved












They’re looking for the one kid out of a million who started his own safe-cracking club, who dared to be interested in something, engaged in or in love with something. And then dared to go after it.


They’re looking for passion. And so are we.

It’s about 40 minutes long, but Duke admissions has a pretty good video about this: