19 March 2023

The Board of Admission at B_____ University has completed a holistic evaluation of your Regular Decision application, and it is with great regret that we inform you that you are by far the worst applicant our university has ever seen.


This decision is an all-encompassing reflection of your talents and accomplishments, and is indicative of your tremendous shortcomings which leave you completely unqualified for admission to B_____ University, and, we can only assume, most others in the continental United States. While 5,000 first-year students are accepted to our university annually, more than 45,000 highly qualified high-school seniors will apply this year. You can rest assured you are not a member of either of these groups.

Each year, we look for hardworking applicants with compelling motivations for seeking out the world-class instruction, resources, and community at B_____ University. Accordingly, we take our admissions process very seriously. We begin by looking at each applicant’s grades and test scores, and rating them on a variety of metrics, with grades ranging from 0 to 10. This was the first year in its long history that the Board had to resort to the use of a negative number. It wasn’t -1.

Of course, as readers, we are fallible. We admit that initially we assumed many of the worst parts of your application, including but not limited to the final two items on your list of extracurriculars (one of ten assistants to the class treasurer, October to December of your junior year; “art enjoyer,” the date of your birth to present), must have been attached as some sort of practical joke. We regret that we were forced to conclude, upon second reading, that the entirety of your application, which included an Extenuating Circumstances supplement about tinnitus, was intended in earnest.

We would be remiss not to discuss the essay. Perhaps the only interesting thing about your discussion of “being yourself” is that it ended right in the middle of a sentence, after the word “and,” which we can only assume owes to a technological issue in which you exceeded the word limit provided to you in no uncertain terms by the Common App.

We are aware that many rejected Regular Decision applicants come to regret forgoing the Early Decision process because of a retrospective impression that Early Decision may have in fact represented their only chance of admission. We hope we can bring you some solace on what we are sure is a difficult day by assuring you that your odds of admission would have been equally nonexistent in the Early Decision pool. Any belief to the contrary would represent a fundamental misunderstanding of statistics on your behalf, a possibility we felt would be irresponsible not to address in this letter given your grades in math over the course of the last year.

On behalf of everyone here at the Board of Admissions, we extend our heartfelt gratitude for your application. We are also grateful for your decision, as noted in your “Why B_____” supplement, to apply in coordination with your two closest friends. We are delighted to tell you that not only have they both been accepted, but they intend to matriculate and live out the “four more years” plan that you so excitedly (if not necessarily eloquently) laid out in your supplement.

We often find ourselves in the difficult position of being unable to admit a great many of the students we would like to have here, and in this respect you have made our lives quite a bit easier. Of course, we take no pleasure in delivering a different result than the one you surely wanted—our hands were tied by the absence in your application of even a modicum of merit.

We wish you all the best as you pursue your plan Bs, Cs, Ds, and Fs.

Yours sincerely,

Elizabeth P. Durbin
Dean of Admission

P.S. However unsatisfied you may feel, we want you to know that we value your enthusiasm for B_____ University. In an effort not to put that enthusiasm to waste, we would like to formally invite you to donate to our alumni fund.