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Davis, California

Thursday, May 30, 2024

Editorial: UC waitlists

This spring, several UC campuses, including UC Davis, will implement a waitlist system in the admissions process.

Waitlists will ultimately contribute to campus rankings nationwide. Our yield percentage, the number of accepted students who will actually attend UCD, will also increase since fewer students will be guaranteed admission. This will in turn improve campus rankings.

UC Davis has also had problems with over-enrollment in the past, but the waitlist program will help manage an overload of students. Waitlists will help alleviate other problems and costs associated with an excess of acceptances, such as limited on-campus housing, campus resources and services.

Furthermore, UC-qualified students will be accepted somewhere in the UC system regardless of whether they applied to that specific campus. Waitlisted or not, eligible students who want to attend a UC campus will be able to.

At many schools that already use waitlists, about a third of the list is ultimately accepted. Even if students’ stress levels increase as a result of having to wait longer, the waitlists provide another option for those planning their future in higher education.

The date to submit an intent to register decision for California State University as well as UCs is May 1, but waitlist decisions will not be available until May 17. This time period poses a conflict.

For applicants who are willing to wait, however, the outcome may be well worth it. For example, if a student gets into a certain school after being on the waitlist, he or she may be able to attend one of their top choice schools, when that would not have been possible in the past.

UC waitlists can also pose an opportunity for those students considering community colleges. If they are dropped from the waitlist, they can still attend a community college or another UC.

Waiting is a gamble, but the system can work out in the best interest of the student in the end.


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