UI Admissions publicizes appeals process online

Twenty-one students can thank a more transparent appeals process for giving them the opportunity to attend the University this fall.

Students often do not get that second chance to prove their worth in the college admissions process. But in the past year, the University’s admissions office has been working to make the process more of a conversation then a jurisdiction.

This year was the first time the admissions appeals system was publicized on the University’s website. Although many students are learning about this process for the first time, University Spokeswoman Robin Kaler said that the program itself has been in place for a while.

“For students who have shared new and compelling information with admissions counselors, we have always told them about the process and encouraged them to use it,” Kaler said.

This past year, only 157 students applied for an appeal. Of those students only 18 had their decision overturned. Eighteen other students requested admission into a different college on campus, but only three of those were successful. Kaler said that most requests are denied because students don’t provide appeal-worthy facts.

“A successful appeal must contain new and compelling information, so students can’t simply restate information in their original application, nor can their reasoning be some variation of ‘I really, really want to go to Illinois,’” Kaler said.

When asked about this process, many students supported the idea of an appeals process. Jessica Kenneally, freshman in Business, said she thinks the timing of college applications can have an adverse effect on someone’s initial application.

“It was really stressful going through that last year,” Kenneally said. “You write so many essays and have so much going on. Maybe if that’s not your best work or they don’t get the right idea out of you, you should at least get the opportunity to appeal.”

Ian Hilgers, junior in Business, said he believes students have to earn their appeal.

“I believe they should have a chance but you can only go so far,” Hilgers said. “I think based on what has happened to them, they should get a chance to go through a new selection process. If they have qualifications, ACT scores, grades, extracurriculars that are better than people who got in, then they should be allowed in as well.”

According to the official appeals application form, all appeals must be submitted before May 1 of the student’s application year.