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### High School Students Spending Thousands on College Applications: A Growing Concern

High school students are now applying to an unprecedented number of colleges, driven by concerns about campus antisemitism, evolving testing policies, and the Supreme Court’s affirmative action ruling.

Christopher Rim, a college admissions consultant, noted a significant shift in application numbers. Previously, his clients would typically apply to around 12 schools. However, this year, 90% of the students he assists are submitting applications to 20 or more colleges.

Rim emphasized the current trend, stating that students are essentially playing a numbers game, casting a wide net to increase their chances of acceptance. One of his clients is even applying to over 30 schools, incurring close to $100 in application fees for each submission.

The intensifying competition in the college admissions landscape has prompted families to adopt a more strategic approach. Rim highlighted the shift towards applying to a broader range of institutions beyond the traditional Ivy League schools, such as NYU, Duke, Emory, and Washington University in St. Louis.

Notably, schools like NYU and Duke have drastically reduced their acceptance rates over the years, making them as competitive as the renowned Ivy League universities. This trend has led students to reconsider their college choices, with some opting for “Ivy-plus” schools over Ivy League options.

Furthermore, recent developments, including the reinstatement of standardized testing requirements and the Supreme Court’s decision on affirmative action, have added to the complexity of the application process. Students are grappling with uncertainty and adapting to these evolving circumstances, which have heightened the stress and confusion surrounding college admissions.

In this challenging environment, Rim’s clients are navigating a maze of uncertainties, from meeting testing requirements to understanding the implications of policy changes. The allure of prestigious institutions coupled with the prevailing chaos in the admissions process underscores the need for students to be strategic and adaptable in their approach to securing college placements.