College Admissions

How to Read a College Acceptance Letter

Today’s the day — your child’s letter of acceptance from their favorite college has arrived. After celebrating the moment, however, it’s essential to review the details of their college acceptance letter, which will provide information on the acceptance, the student’s intended major, creating a student email address to create a student portal and the overall registration process – including information about accepted students days. The letter may also include scholarship information however, most acceptance letters do not include detailed financial aid information. You can expect to get a detailed financial aid award letter under separate cover. Some colleges communicate ONLY through the student’s portal so it’s important that – after acceptance – your child regularly check for further information.

Learn more about how to read a college acceptance letter below.

What to Look for in a College Acceptance Letter

Now that you know your child is accepted by one of their colleges, here is what you want to look for in their college acceptance letter:

  • Enrollment: Be sure to read the letter carefully. Check the student’s major and/or college they’ve been accepted into. For instance, Rutgers University has several different colleges within its university so a student may be accepted into more than one.
  • Commitment: May 1st is commitment day for most colleges. This is the deadline for paying the enrollment and housing deposit. There’s no harm done in paying the deposit earlier, but you must do it no later than May 1st. You may want to hold off if you are waiting on additional acceptances or detailed financial aid information.
  • Financial aid: Financial aid award letters come separately from acceptance letters and include details regarding scholarships, grants and loans. Read these letters carefully so that you understand what your out-of-pocket will be. Keep in mind that cost of attendance includes tuition, room and board, plus incidentals such as textbooks. You want to take this all into consideration when determining what you are expected to pay.
  • Wait-listed schools: It’s entirely possible that your student will be accepted into their top choice school off the waitlist, after the May 1st deadline. If you decide to attend that school, you will likely lose the deposit you put down previously. Most deposits are $200 to $500 and include both enrollment and housing. (Note: Make sure there is housing available at a wait-listed school before making a new commitment.)

Another tip for reading college acceptance letters? Enjoy the moment. For your child, it’s a milestone and memorable accomplishment that a college of their choice has accepted them. And as you compare the offers and their financial details, also remember to consider the quality of education provided by each one.

Navigate the Financial Aid Maze With Ecliptic Financial Advisors, Inc.

At Ecliptic Financial Advisors, our exceptional team of college funding strategists is here to help you and your child navigate the financial aid maze that comes with college acceptance letters, as well as the planning that happens before applying to a series of colleges. With the guidance of our knowledgeable team, which provides college admissions counseling, college funding strategies, and free workshops available across New Jersey, we’ll make the process of planning for your child’s future seamless.

Contact us to learn more about what to look for in a college acceptance letter or register for one of our upcoming webinars.

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