For high school seniors, the much-dreaded season of writing and submitting college applications has commenced. The question of “What makes you unique?” looms over students as they try to discover the edge that sets them apart from the other thousands of applicants.
Since 2009, some colleges have allowed applicants to submit their applications via YouTube. Schools like Tufts and George Mason University allow for more diversity in applicant pool by allowing students to show their personalities.
According to the New York Times, making and submitting a video is an “opportunity [for students] to step out of the codified, qualified background of [their] transcripts [and] into the foreground.”
Lee Coffin, dean of undergraduate admissions at Tufts, told the Times that “[Video applications] are evaluated like any submission: creativity, thoughtfulness, voice. Like an excellent written essay, the best videos showcase a student’s voice.”
Students like Stephen Brakilis, a senior at Claremont High School, advocate video solicitation.
In an interview with JSR, Brakilis said, “Ever since I was little, putting together videos has always been a little hobby of mine. The fact that I’d be able to show off my love for cinema while taking a huge step in my life… makes me feel a little reassured.”
Yet not everyone feels incentivized to show their edge on tape. Others question the practice.
Jaeho Lee, a senior at Crescenta Valley High School, said, “I don’t like the idea that a video that can determine my future would be posted on the same site as videos that are foolish or obscene. Posting the video on YouTube makes me doubt the professionalism behind the college admissions process.”
While there may be opposing views, video solicitation remains an option for individuals who wish to display their creativity and passion to colleges.