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Editorial | It's time to end Regular Decision


DP File Photo

The growing prominence of Early Decision in Penn’s admissions process is not without controversy. Applicants who apply early must submit a binding contract, and are required to enroll at Penn upon admission. Legacy students, student-athletes, and students of higher socioeconomic status have been shown to compose a disproportionately high percentage of the Early applicant pool. And despite the fact that fewer than a sixth of applicants applied early, Early Decision admits made up over 55% of Penn’s Class of 2021. For these reasons, last year’s Editorial Board of The Daily Pennsylvanian called for an end to Early Decision.

Our Editorial Board, however, believes that ending ED would be a grave and irresponsible mistake. Of course, we agree that the fundamental structure of Penn’s admissions process should drastically and permanently change based on the opinion of a student newspaper, but we need to enact the right change. It's imperative that Penn ends Regular Decision admissions. And we need to act fast, because decision day is tomorrow, giving us one day to prevent tragedy. We must make sure that every one of the thousands of hopeful high school seniors are denied from our university.

Why do we need to end Regular Decision, once and for all? Allow us to break it down for you.

In recent years, high school students are applying to more and more colleges. Your parents may have applied to two or three. Maybe you applied to ten or so. Now, kids are more competitive than ever. Did you hear about the student last year who applied to 29 schools and got into 14 Ivies? It’s ridiculous. Wow, 29 schools. That’s crazy. You know, Arie had 29 women vying for his affections on this past season of The Bachelor. We don’t know if you watched, but, oh my god, that finale, right? But I digress.

The college application process, like the nine weeks of The Bachelor. can be kind of a whirlwind. And just like Arie Lukeydnyk Jr., you’re expected to make a pretty life-changing decision at the end of it. How are you supposed to know exactly which of the 29 women—ahem, we mean colleges— you want to be with for the next four years?

We understand why choosing a school by May 1st could be a dilemma: to be honest, there’s not a ton of info to go on. At best, you went to some info sessions at various schools and some students took you on some campus tours. But come on, you definitely didn’t realize how much Penn would suck until you got here. When we said yes to Penn, we were kinda under the impression that we were gonna have fun classes, great social lives, and throw toast on Franklin Field every weekend.

So, yeah, looking back, maybe it doesn’t seem that crazy that Arie got down on one knee, proposed to Becca K., and then changed his mind two months later because he actually wanted to be with Lauren B. The Bachelor process is complicated and he just wasn’t sure about his decision—cut him some slack! 

Just kidding. He’s the worst.

In conclusion, it’s evident that Regular Decision is messy. One student choosing between 29 schools after a single one-on-one date? It’s a recipe for disaster. Early Decision is definitely the only way to go. We want to be with students who want to be with us, and only us. It’s 2018. No more mind games. No more playing hard to get.

Plus, there wouldn't be Quaker days anymore, so there's that.