2 years ago
Admissions Advice

Unfair Situation in Admissions

I really need help with someone. My twin sister has been really working hard on their grades, but during quarantine started struggling with chronic pain and memory loss. Our school has done nothing to help her and she has a lot of failed grades on her transcript now. What can I do to help my sister to get into the college I desires to be into this despite the schools mistreatment. She has good grades on her freshman and sophomore years, but her senior year is not good. I know her second semester junior year grades where not good, but her 1st semester grades might be better.


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4 answers

Accepted Answer
2 years ago[edited]

Sorry about your sister. Many HS students have been affected both physically, mentally and emotionally during this unprecedented global pandemic. Most students have suffered to some degree but have been able to power through while others not so much.

College admissions is like rolling train, with so much momentum and force behind it, once you fail to board the train with all the right credentials, it's virtually impossible to be brought to the station of your desired destination. So like you said, you are equipped to apply to certain schools and have the right credentials to make the trip but your sister has fallen to her mental and physical issues and will not be able to arrive at the same schools as you.

Since you are person of faith, I think you already know that the answer may not be found on a CV blog because you already know that what you want will not happen. No college will take your siblings circumstance in stride and accept both of you into the same schools because right now she is at a different level than you are.

From what you are writing, it seems like both of you would be very sad if you went to the school you are supposed to be at and she has to settle for community college or something of a safety school. Your paths with diverge and you will have different college experiences. Your feelings of guilt and responsibility may endure well past her college experience and she may suffer long term effects. She may still not be able to thrive if she has to settle for a schools that you feel is a compromise.

The only way you can ensure both of you will be end up at the same better schools is if you both take a GAP year and help your sister make up her grades, and course rigor and ECs etc up to your standard and then both apply again next year to the same schools. While this is sacrifice for sure, you may both benefit from taking some time off to shore up your narratives to the best versions of yourselves. There is still a possibility that you both may not get accepted by all the schools you apply together but the odds will be much more favorable if your sister can reclaim her lost time from the pandemic and convalesce so she has a fighting chance to board that admissions train with you. Alternatively, you can wait and see where you get in and then inform the school of your choice that you want to take a Gap Year which they will happily oblige for 1 year. Then you will have time to pursue some job, or intellectual research project and help your sister at the same time. I will re-iterate as I wrote before, that your sister may not be happy settling for a sub-par college so I don't think you should encourage her to apply to them.

I'm not a twin, so I don't know how important this is to you but I know twins and some of them are inseparable and wish to keep it that way as long as possible.

Good luck.

2 years ago

Hi, thank you for asking your question. I'm sorry to hear about this situation and can't imagine how tough it might be for you two given that college admissions is right around the corner. That being said, @CameronBameron has provided a great response with some important points. I would consider a gap year, if you are looking to apply into really selective colleges. Otherwise, even with lower grades there will be local state and public schools that hopefully fit into your sisters college admissions profile chances. Another option for you and your sister is to utilize the additional information section of your CommonApp application. This way you can share your sisters story with academic obstacles with the admissions committee.

Hope this helps. I'm rooting for you both!

2 years ago

I am sorry about this situation with your sister.

She can write about it in the additional information essay or her personal statement, as a challenge he passes through.

2 years ago

In many situations there is a special circumstances form you can fill out with colleges. Especially in the area of grades many colleges have been lenient on remote grades because of very unique circumstances dealing with stress or other situations. I suggest you do some research into the special forms or explanation essay areas for the specific colleges she is trying to get into. I hope this helps, I am very sorry about your sister's situation and I wish her luck.

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