Update Time: Wait List News / Transfer Happenings / and LOST Theories

9

"It’s May … I am not supposed to be busy."

This is what I keep saying to myself. After the fury of February (finishing first reads), the mayhem of March (committee reviews), and the abundance of April (tons of visitors and events), — [you all like that alliteration, huh?] — the month of May is supposed to be my down time. However, this year it does not seem to be going that way. My spring travel was quite busy (details to follow soon) and now it is past 7:00pm on Friday evening and I am still at work.

Why is this you ask? Well, because after a busy day it is time to provide updates to some of my readers … namely (1) those on the wait list; (2) those who applied for transfer admissions; and (3) those who are fanatics for LOST like me. So without further adieu … it is update time:

WAIT LIST UPDATE

This afternoon (Friday, May 9), the Admissions Committee contacted approximately 30 students who had selected to remain on the Johns Hopkins wait list and offered them a spot in the JHU Class of 2012. Congratulations goes out to those students and we hope you all choose to attend. The Class of 2012 is shaping up to be one of our best ever, and we feel those selected today will make a great addition.

For the rest of you, please understand this is just step one in our process. Because you were not contacted today does not mean you will not be offered a spot in the class in the future. As always, we are quite deliberate in our process regarding the wait list. Everything is tied to the number of students in the enrolling class, and at this time we have slightly surpassed our 1235 enrollment target. Despite being slightly above our target, the Admissions Committee decided today to admit a handful of students off the wait list to increase our enrollment slightly and to protect against the "summer melt." (Don’t know what summer melt is click here.)

I said it last year and will said it again this year … we have not in the past, and will not this year make any rash decisions. Over the next few weeks, the staff will continue to monitor the numbers and discuss wait list issues. We may decide to admit another round of students off the wait list, or we may determine that the class is sealed. We could also choose to select some students for an extended summer wait list and release all the others. There are a number of options available to us, and we will continue to discuss all of them in relation to our enrollment figures over the coming days and weeks. We hope to have finalized all decisions about the wait list by mid-June. Once we have reached a decision, all students who selected to remain on the wait list will be notified by mail or email.

What we ask of you all now is PATIENCE. We respect and understand the frustration that comes with being asked to wait, and we are placing as much urgency on these wait list questions as possible. However, this takes time. In addition to your patience, we request that you refrain from contacting us to ask about your individual status on the wait list. As I have stated on the Wait List Discussion Thread, we do not rank our wait list. Therefore, we can not field questions from wait listed students requesting an individual assessment of one’s chances of being admitted off the wait list. Your patience and restraint will be appreciated, and once an update is available I will post again.

TRANSFER APPLICATION UPDATE

The transfer student is the forgotten student when it comes to the Hopkins Insider blog, but I hope that such impressions will change with a few of the initiatives we will launch in the coming weeks. Before we get to that announcement, let me provide you all with a brief update as to where we stand with regards to transfer applications.

The Transfer Review Committee is nearly completion of the first-read evaluations of the over 700 completed transfer applications we received this year. This is a consistent total of applications for the last few years, and based on reviews the quality is on par with the previous years as well. Over the next couple of weeks the committee will be continuing the evaluation process and the plan is to release decisions by the end of May. No official date has been selected yet, as the official number of transfer students we can admit is tied to a number of issues revolving around the overall enrollment of the school.

As always, at this stage in the transfer review process the discussion is as much about the quality of each individual applicant and the fit of each applicant to Hopkins, as it is about the overall number of admits we can offer. The enrolling freshmen class size, retention rates, housing spaces, academic distribution of programs, and a number of other factors all tie into our decision making process. So there are a lot of numbers that will be figured out in the coming weeks — but rest assured the Transfer Review Committee is hard at work.

Now for the exciting news …

Last year I began to outreach a bit to transfer students with my "Ode to the Transfer Applicant" blog entry. I confessed in that entry though that since I am not part of the Transfer Admissions Review Committee I have little information to supply to prospective transfer students and applicants. I do the best I can and reference my colleagues often, but my focus is elsewhere in the office. But through the extremely hard work of a current transfer student at Hopkins, Tanya Lukasik, we have number of initiatives through Hopkins Interactive for transfer students.

First, in the next few days I will posting a special Guest Author entry from Tanya discussing the transfer process through her experiences. I think you will all enjoy this entry and learn a lot from her. Stay tuned.

Second, we launched today the Transfer Exchange section of the Hopkins Forums. Now transfer students have their own discussion thread to ask questions of Admissions and more importantly connect with and get advice with current students at Hopkins who successfully navigated the transfer process. Check back over the next few days as we expand this new forum section and as the "Transfer Buddies" are introduced. As always, ask your questions there for quick responses … and if you have any feedback share it with us.

More to follow …

LOST FANS READ ON

For those of you who read the Insider blog just for the updates on Hopkins and Admissions you may want to stop reading and move on to something more of interest to you on the Internet. For the rest of you who enjoying the random ramblings of Admissions_Daniel at times … oh do I have a doozy of an update for you today. After last night’s episode of LOST I have figured out the central mystery behind the show and specifically the Island. Yes, yours truly has figured it out. Curious? Well read on …

The Island is … wait for it … wait for it … The Island is THE HOLY GRAIL. Huh? Yes, my theory (as of right now) is that the Island is some form of mythical holy grail tied to eternal life that must be protected at all costs and against all invaders. The "Others" supposedly led by the mysterious Jacob, the ageless Richard, and the African with the piercing eyes are the hereditary knights enslaved in all eternity to protect the grail and its powers. These "Others" recruit new followers such as Ben and now Locke to protect the mysteries of the Island and its amazing healing powers. There have been many threats to the Island like the Dharma Initiative and currently with Mr. Whitmore, those who hope to unlock the powers of the Island/Grail and use them for personal gain. Add to the theory the mystery of how the certain "dead" people — Jack/Claire’s Dad, Charlie, the Mathematician, etc. (maybe even Claire herself) — are also protecting the mysticism of the Island.

OK, clearly this is a far-fetched theory, but last night I thought I had solved the puzzle and was so excited. My theory has more holes than a pound of swiss cheese, but that is why I love this show. After every episode you are more LOST than ever and more ADDICTED than ever. I actually thought today over lunch that maybe the reason I came up with those whole Holy Grail theory is because I have been watching too much old Indiana Jones films (and the Young Indiana Jones series) and also just recently saw the Da Vinici code again. Whatever the reason, throw my theory in the mix … who knows I could be right.

And finally, I would be remiss if I didn’t somehow tie this discussion of LOST back to Hopkins. In the shower today I actually had an epiphany … LOST = Hopkins. See one of the underlying themes of the LOST mythology is a battle of faith/theology (present in Locke) versus science/reason (present in Jack). These two ideologies are constantly in battle on the Island, and it seems that one of the end conclusions is that no one theory is correct but rather science and faith must co-exist. This being true, where else does science and faith co-exist … well simple … at Hopkins.

See at Hopkins we have our Natural Science and Engineering students who base their conclusions on facts and proofs. On the same campus, in the same classrooms, and in the same housing and dining facilities are the Humanities and Social Sciences students who believe in a more philosophical and theoretical approach to understanding. And what makes Hopkins great is that they co-exist and intermingle.

OK, that was even cheesier than my LOST = Holy Grail theory … but you know this is my blog … this is my "bully pulpit" … and I can share on occasion some of the crazy ideas that run threw my simple mind. I hope you enjoyed these ramblings, and if you have your own theories or just want to crush and ridicule my thoughts … use the comments section.

I am off to enjoy my weekend finally … HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY. And go Hopkins Lacrosse … beat Hofstra (PLEASE!!!).

9 Comments

  • By Jongyoon, May 9, 2008 @ 9:46 PM

    Thank you for the update. I guess I have to wait, but I REALLY want to get in to Hopkins(I’m waitlisted)

  • By Sarah, May 9, 2008 @ 11:38 PM

    The Holy Grail… that actually makes sense. I love how there are so many random elements to the show (like the wondering “dead” people on the island) that make whole process of developing theories that much more complicated.
    Last year, Ellen Degeneres interviewed Dominic Monaghan (Charlie) on her show, and Dominic said that upon creating Lost, the writers wrote the first and last seasons, and they are making up the middle seasons as the show airs. If the writers are just making up the middle according to how many shows they need, could this mean that a lot of the occurrences in these middle seasons are just space fillers meant to hold our attention, or do you think that they actually hint toward the central mystery of the island?
    Another question: Did we ever find out why there was a polar bear on the island during the first season?
    To add one last thought, I would have to argue that 24 is more addictive than Lost. I’m still very sad that it didn’t air this year. Monday nights aren’t the same without Jack Bauer.

  • By Patricia, May 10, 2008 @ 9:18 PM

    I have honestly been watching this space for the last two weeks or so hoping for any update on the transfer applications,selection process,etc.. so thank you for the Update. I do hope that I will be in Baltimore come fall. I am looking forward to reading the guest author entry. I doubt it will make the wait any less painless; but,I am definitely looking forward to reading it.
    Thanks once again you for the update.

  • By Ankit Grover, May 10, 2008 @ 11:11 PM

    Thank you so much for your updates. As a waitlisted student, it really helps… Hopefully, i will be in Baltimore next year!

  • By Daniel Creasy, May 11, 2008 @ 8:25 AM

    Thanks for the comments everyone. To those still on the wait list, good luck and keep checking back for updates.
    Patricia: Glad to see that once again this year there are transfer students reading the blog. As I said a few more transfer posts will post this year and I hope you use the Transfer Exchange thread on the Hopkins Forums.
    Sarah: 24 has been off the air so long that I have almost forgotten about it. Add to it that its last season was so inconsistent, LOST now is clearly my #1 favoriet show. As far as the LOST writers, I think that now they have settled on an end date for the show that EVERYTHING they put in these episodes has something to do with the overall mystery — that includes the Polar Bear (which was explained as one of the left over animals from Dharma).

  • By Dhruv Desai, May 11, 2008 @ 9:16 AM

    I’m also a waitlisted student and I would like to say that these updates are honestly very helpful – its nice to know where things are in the wait list process.
    Sidenote: I’ve always wondered what the Polar Bear was symbolically in LOST, but now I know! :-)
    Hope to see everyone in Baltimore this Fall!

  • By Alex Blanco, May 11, 2008 @ 4:14 PM

    Thanks for the update, I’m kinda frustrated about the waitlist situation but it’s good to have a blog where information can come out. I’m a blogger myself and your mix of personal and proffesional stuff is pretty unique. Anyways, just wanted to drop by and say hi.

  • By Karissa, May 11, 2008 @ 10:22 PM

    The Holy Grail, hmm. Now that’s an interesting theory…

  • By Luke Divine, May 15, 2008 @ 7:23 PM

    It’s so nice to see that JHU (or any university for that matter) will be including more information and providing more resources for transfer students. Now we just have to keep our fingers crossed till the end of May… and to think last year I thought the wait for wait-listed students was bad :0

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