The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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When considering the St. John’s application process for out-of-state students, the whole concept is rather interesting.

In terms of recognition, St. John’s is almost surely in the mix of potential colleges for many high school students from the New York area.

But what about the students who aren’t from the tri-state area, who have not grown up within the jurisdiction of the University’s influence? What is it about St. John’s, out of all the other schools in the country, that makes these students pack up, leave the comfort of their hometowns and come to Queens?

If you ask many of these students this question, you’re likely to get the same kind of response: the school’s big city location and easy application process.

St. John’s current admissions process poses one of the easiest and quickest applications amongst American universities.

There is no essay requirement or mandatory letters of recommendation. The application can be completed fully online in less than 20 minutes and there is no application fee to apply.

Once accepted, a staggering amount of students receive financial aid, and plenty of it. If you’re a graduating high school senior with a pulse, why wouldn’t you send an application to St. John’s?

At other New York schools, the process is more what you would expect of a college.

Hofstra University requires a personal statement and a $50 fee for applying online, $70 for applying by mail. City University of New York and Stony Brook also require application fees and an essay in order to apply. Quite simply, if the application process is more demanding at schools like CUNY and Hofstra, then St. John’s needs to re-evaluate their admissions requirements.

Fordham University, one of the top schools in New York State, also requires an essay and $50 fee, in addition to recommendations.

In order to improve and grow as a school, St. John’s needs to emulate schools like Fordham, not fall short.

In some ways, the St. John’s admissions process resembles convenience.

Unfortunately, the school’s admissions
process is designed to coax as many students into applying as possible with little regard to the caliber
of students being accepted.

There comes a point when the admissions process should become a little more demanding of students’ commitment. Every year St. John’s boasts its immense application rate, but these large numbers become obvious considering the lax admissions system.

It should not be the case that students are being accepted without a writing sample and essay of academic intention. It is not acceptable that the school is placing more importance on quantity rather than quality.

Meanwhile, at universities across the nation, admissions committees are doing the opposite of St. John’s, developing their procedure for learning more about the students applying to their schools.

The admissions at Hofstra and Stony Brook represent the norm in college admissions.

At Tufts University, the admissions board even encourages, in addition to a required essay, that students submit YouTube videos of themselves with their application.

St. John’s cannot expect to grow and compete with top schools while their application is a weak
way of filtering students.

Large numbers of incoming applications doesn’t mean the school is attracting the best students, or even that they’re attracting students genuinely interesting in attending the school.

If St. John’s is going to start attracting students from across the country based on their academics, the quality of students being admitted needs to rise. The application process is a good place to start.

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