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  • Writer's pictureElizabeth La Porte

Will Colleges Open This Fall?

Liz La Porte Newsletter: May 12, 2020 Will Colleges Open This Fall? ________________________________________ Dear Friends, I hope this finds you well!  And, congratulations to the seniors on their upcoming graduation.  There are no easy answers right now, and higher education, along with most other parts of society, is facing unprecedented challenges. Every day brings more questions: Will schools open in the fall?  Will classes be taught via Zoom?  Will students be able to play sports?  Will everybody be safe on campus?  Here are some updates which I hope you'll find useful.  As a college advisor, I focus on the most updated sources available; feel free to reach out with questions or clarification. (For information on my consulting practice, click this FAQ link.) Thank you, Orinda Aquatics! But first, a big shout out to Orinda Aquatics Coaches Don and Ron Heidary for giving me the opportunity to present college admission advice to their swimmers! 

Will UC Cancel Fall Semester? Janet Napolitano, President of the University of California, said in an interview recently that the nine campuses, home to over 280,000 students, would open only if appropriate testing, contact tracing and other safety plans were in place. See here for helpful COVID-19 UC updates.

Other UC Announcements, May 12, 2020 1.  Students who accept an offer of admission must submit final, official transcripts postmarked by July 1 from their high/secondary school and transcripts from colleges/universities to the one UC campus where they intend to enroll.  2.  Official AP, IB and/or A-Level results are not required until July 15. Students must have all official results sent from the testing agency/exam board to the campus. 3.  UC Merced, UC Riverside and UC Santa Cruz will accept transfer applications for Winter quarter/Spring semester 2021. The application filing period is July 1-31.  UC Merced will be accepting freshman applications for Spring 2021 semester. The application filing period is July 1-31.   All UC campuses except Merced are using a wait list process for transfer applicants to manage their enrollments.

Just for fun: some of the greatest graduation speeches in America.

Register Now for College Essay Workshops

I'm excited to be offering for the fifth summer in a row, small-group essay workshops in which a limited number of students get to discuss, write and receive feedback on their college essays in a safe environment.  Over four days, we  read successful college essays, identify relevant essay topics, and draft distinctive UC and Common App essays.  Classes begin June 1.  For dates and registration, click here.  Contact me at (650) 766-0969 for more information. 

Free College Information Sessions

As usual, I offer free informational presentations about the college admission process to parents and students.  Join me on Zoom to get important admission information and to have your questions answered.

Sun, May 17, 4pm, How to Plan a Competitive Application (for 9th-11th)

Sun, May 24, 4pm, The College List for STEM Majors

Sun, May 31, 4pm, Financial Aid Overview and Discussion

For a Zoom invitation, email me at contact@lpeducationadvising.

Brown University President Says Colleges Must Open Christine Paxson makes a case that college campuses across the U.S. are able to, and indeed must, open this fall.  She outlines her argument in this NYT op-ed piece. What If I'm Wait Listed? This year more than ever, wait listed students have a higher chance of being accepted to their top choice schools as universities grapple with uncertain enrollment numbers and plunging revenue. Many have extended the decision date to June 1 or even longer to try to yield high enrollment figures. If you are wait listed, go ahead and submit that additional essay, get in touch with your admission rep, and clearly communicate your desire to enroll.  Traditionally, some schools have weighed the student visit to campus as a plus; now that in-person appointments are not possible, reach out to the dean or write an email to the Admission Office. Be proactive!

Want to Visit Campus?  Virtual Tours Are the Next Best Thing For those applying for college next fall, College Tours presents beautifully photographed online tours and profiles of many campuses.  UCB Tour: At UC Berkeley, Zoom tours will be conducted in real-time by student ambassadors who will also answer questions; register for a tour here:  May 13-May 17.  Contact other campuses for tour information. Don't Just Take a Year Off, Build Your Resume If you've considered a gap year, this may be good time to think about it more seriously.  Since travel abroad is now in question, Bill Deresiewicz, author and board member of Tivnu: Building Justice, a Jewish gap-year program in Portland, Oregon, recommends in this interesting article that students "step off the conveyor belt, to grow up a little bit, to learn about parts of American society they would never otherwise experience and to help their fellow Americans at this moment of unprecedented need." Other reputable service organizations: Student Conservation Association, AmeriCorps, and National Park Service Youth Programs.  Jean Fan at TEDx Bergen talks about the value of finding meaning outside of academics in this video.

Thanks for reading and please forward to a friend.

Stay safe. 


Liz Raised in Lafayette, Liz La Porte is an experienced college advisor and credentialed high school English teacher, who founded her education practice in 2012 to help students successfully navigate the college admission process. Working one-on-one with her students to maximize their applications and to write genuinely personal essays, her students have been accepted to Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, UCB, Duke, and others. Liz has presented at NACAC College Fairs, to Lamorinda community groups and to schools throughout the Bay Area.  She attended Swarthmore College and UC Berkeley.  View her bio here. Liz is now accepting new students. Call (650) 766-0969 for a free initial consultation. Visit or email her at (650) 766-0969 For archived newsletters, click here. Copyright © 2020 LP Education Advising All Rights Reserved

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