How to Deal with College Mail

How to Deal with College Mail

By Contributor

This post by Sparkler michelleb337 reminds us of that scene in Harry Potter when letters start flying out of the chimney and attacking the Dursleys. AWESOME. — SparkNotes editors

The onslaught cannot be suppressed: they will reach you by any means possible, their attempts to contact you will be unceasing, and you will never have an empty inbox again. You may try to hide their correspondences in an old filing cabinet in your basement, you may even attempt to remain organized while under fire, but your resistance is futile. Once you reach your 11th year of schooling, you can never stop...THE ATTACK OF COLLEGE MAIL!

Now, you may be wondering, Why is this girl so angry at colleges? I would love to receive a free copy of “Let Us Help You Help Us: 5 Tips for an Essay That Won’t Make Admission People Want to Rip Their Hair Out,” written especially for me! But you would be wrong. The problem does not lie in the free guides or five-step brochures themselves; it lies in the sheer mass of them delivered to your doorstep. Literally hundreds of offers, pamphlets, and postcards will build up over time, and it’s all because of one little box you checked on the PSAT: “Would you like to receive mail from colleges through our Student Search Service?”

It’s a real problem, which is why I’ve written my own guide: “How to Deal with College Mail.” Without further ado, I present your options:

1. Don’t go to college. This is the best way to avoid college mail. And as an added bonus, you don’t have to take the ACT, SAT, or even consider checking a single box on the PSAT. On the downside, think of all the experiences you’ll miss! The whole reason for enduring the hell of high school was so you could go far far away to college, right?

2. Don’t select the Student Search Service option on the PSAT. This could work, except that you’re closing the door to information about colleges you haven’t heard of. Yes, you could only give out information to colleges you select, but what if your dream college is out there somewhere, unable to find you? Hopefully they have a booth at your local college fair with a representative you’re not too horrified to actually talk to.

3. Ignore all the mail you get through the Student Search or any other subscription of its nature. After you’ve unknowingly subjected yourself to this torrent of doom-mail, this seems like the easiest option. But it’s the option of the weak-hearted. Because even if you delete everything from your inbox and throw away every postcard sent by a college, more will come. And you can’t afford to ignore mail from colleges you’re actually interested in.

4. “Click Here” every time you’re prompted to by a college. You don’t want to miss anything. But if you’re not careful, you’ll end up in a pile of guidebooks, viewbooks, and other useless garbage, crying your eyes out and eating Ben & Jerry’s Half-Baked. Trust me, I've been there. 

5. Sign up for the service, and deal with the mail as it comes. If you get mail from a college you know you’ll never go to, either delete it or file it in the trash can. If you’re interested, let the college know. Set up a good relationship with the college representative from your area.

Or, create your own option. The most you can really do at this point in life is wing it, and know that (hopefully) you’ll only go through the college selection process one time. Enjoy the ride, don’t forget that older siblings/friends are good listeners and advice-givers, and remember, Ben and Jerry are only a grocery store away! Good luck!

How do you deal with college mail?

Related Post: The Ugly World of Email Forwards

Topics: college search, stress, email, college admissions, PSAT, mail

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