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Arts Vanity: Applying to Harvard? Arts Can Help!

Connor S. Dowd Image

The college admissions process can be daunting. Follow the steps below to make it a whole lot easier.

Step 1: Selectively Fail the SAT

Admissions officers may tell you that they look for “well-rounded” students as a part of their “holistic” evaluative process. These are lies. Be as poorly-rounded as possible. Take the SAT, for instance. Simply choose one section to perform well on, then fail the rest. If you like math, get every question on the reading and writing sections wrong. It will show colleges where your priorities lie.

Step 2: The Information Session

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Information sessions are not meant to give you information at all — think of them as auditions. Most prospective students will ask lame questions about student life or admissions, but you are not so foolish. You will impress admissions officers and intimidate your peers by raising your hand, standing proudly, and reciting the entire script of “Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead” until somebody forces you to stop because you’re embarrassing the less prepared students.

Step 3: The Essay

An essay is a great chance to show off your prowess as a writer, right? Wrong! You are not bound by the constraints of this literary form. Instead, make a name for yourself by submitting an avant-garde video essay. Known academic Billie Eilish began her chart-topping album with the memorable sound of her removing her Invisalign, which means that your official College Board video essay should begin the same way. Buy Invisalign even if you don’t need it; it will communicate to colleges that you care about both Billie Eilish and orthodontic health.

Step 4: Interview Mind Games

Your assigned interviewer may want to meet you at a nearby Starbucks. Do not let that happen! Your interviewer will have no choice but to remember you if you reject the proposed meeting location and change it to somewhere quirky and fun, like the sporting goods section of Walmart or the Registry of Motor Vehicles. Playing hard to get is important, so once you choose a location, reschedule a few times and arrive fashionably late. Make a clever pop culture reference to justify your lateness by quoting Ke$ha’s “TiK ToK” and telling your interviewer that “the party don’t start ‘til I walk in.”

Step 5: Art Time

After interviewing and submitting their application, the average student believes that their work is done. You, on the other hand, should not rest until you have been accepted. Many colleges accept art supplements, so send them an ongoing art supplement that includes new pieces created daily. Everybody knows that, when it comes to art, quantity matters infinitely more than quality — just as the Marvel Cinematic Universe! Announce that the first week will be “poetry week” and send a new poem each day. Next comes “opera week,” so warm up your vocal cords! The third week demands live performance art to make sure admissions officers remember your face as well as your name.

Good luck, and remember one thing: It’s the climb.

— Incoming Blog Exec Connor S. Dowd can be reached at connor.dowd@thecrimson.com for all of your college application needs. He listens to Christmas music year round, loves pineapples on pizza, and cracked the worldwide top 10 on the “Flappy Bird” leaderboards. Carl Wheezer is his spirit animal.

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