Hell Hath No Fury Like A Teenager Scorned: The Strangest Calls From NYU’s Rejected Students

“We regret to inform you…” You don’t need to read any further; you know the outcome. All the SAT practice exams, the hours of volunteering, the extra time spent putting together that perfect portfolio/résumé/college application reduced to a single sentence that makes your heart sink.

Rejection blows—when you read those words, it doesn’t matter how “challenging this year’s decision was” or how many “talented students applied.” When you first read those words, you can’t help but feel gutted. So what do you do? Cry? Laugh? Say, “Screw it, I’m moving to Canada?” No! You (or your mother or your younger brother) call the admissions office.

NYU recently sent out admissions decisions and, like clockwork, the phones in the NYU Admissions Office began to ring. There were elated accepted students who thanked NYU for admitting them and couldn’t wait to be in New York City. There were parents and proactive students calling to find out more about financial aid. And then, there were some of the 30,000 who got rejected. Some callers simply questioned, “Why?” Others threw the challenge flag. Others still simply called and cried. But there were a couple of calls that stood out from the pack. With the help of anonymous NYU Admissions Ambassadors who were working the phone lines on decision day, we here at NYU Local have compiled a list of the most interesting Rejected-Student phone calls.

1. THE RACE CARD

Caller: “Hi, I just got rejected from NYU and I was wondering if there is a re-review process?”

Admissions Ambassador: begins to explain that NYU does not have a re-review process.

Caller’s Mother: “My daughter is an African-American student—I demand to talk to the Head of Diversity Initiatives!”

Admissions Ambassador: “Unfortunately, none of our counselors are available today. You can call back—”

Caller’s Mother: “I NEED TO TALK TO THAT PERSON NOW!”

Admissions Ambassador: puts caller’s mother on hold and speaks to supervisor.

Admissions Ambassador: “Hi can I get more information—”

Caller’s Mother: “GIVE ME THE NAME!”

Admissions Ambassador: “Her name is—”

Caller’s Mother: “WOULD YOU JUST SPIT IT—”

Admissions Ambassador: “Her name is—”

Caller’s Mother: “STOP CUTTING ME OFF!”

Admissions Ambassador: gives name and e-mail address.

Caller’s Mother: “I have been stuck in traffic for three freaking hours! Does it sound like I have a pen and paper on me? I do not have more than two hands! You must be a student. I need to talk to an admissions counselor RIGHT NOW.”

Admissions Ambassador: transfers call.

2. THE [FIVE YEAR OLD] BROTHER

Caller: “Hi, my older brother just got rejected from NYU and it was his number one choice. What do we do now?”

Admissions Ambassador: expresses condolences, explains that NYU does not have a re-review process.

Caller: “Okay, I guess.” hangs up.

3. THE “BETTER” CANDIDATE

Caller: “Hi, so my daughter just got rejected [from NYU], and we were wondering why.”

Admissions Ambassador: expresses condolences, “Unfortunately, I do not have access to her files and the admissions counselors have stepped out for the day.”

Caller: “Well we were wondering because her friend who had a lower GPA, SAT score, and [fewer] extra-curricular activities got in to NYU. What makes him better than my daughter?”

Admissions Ambassador: explains that he/she cannot answer the caller’s question.

Caller: “Well this is SO unfair! My daughter deserves to go to NYU more than her friend!”

Admissions Ambassador: express condolences (again), “Please feel free to call back on Monday to speak to an admissions counselor.”

4. THE UNDERSTANDING CALLER

Caller: “Hi, my son just got rejected from Tisch and it was his number one choice for four years. We were wondering what we can do next?”

Admissions Ambassador: begins to explain transfer process, hears son of caller sobbing in the background.

Caller: “Thank you so much, can you suggest other schools my son should apply to?”

Admissions Ambassador: “Unfortunately, I cannot suggest specific schools…”

Caller: “Thank you so much for being so kind. I realize that you’re probably getting many calls like this today—hope we didn’t put a damper on your day!”

There you have it. Whining gets you nowhere—whether you play the race card, seek pity, claim superiority, or feign understanding, we regret to inform you…you’re still rejected.

[Image via MitarArt / shutterstock.com]

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    15 Comments

  1. says

    College is a rip off and a scam, like the military. One big fat lie and a dead end road. Don’t go. They’ll take all your money and give you zero gurantees, and train you in things nobody wants or needs, and when they no longer need you, they’ll discard you like so much trash and take in the next batch of suckers.

  2. Marcy Greene says

    Spoken like a true gentleman. Preach on, brotha! Those declined are never confined to a single borderline. Those hapless few, they still got their shoes, and the hat on their head—at least they’re not dead!

    My son, years ago, was turned down form NYU, thrown to the curb like an abandoned child, left to wander the streets like a vagabond with benefits. But I told my boy! I told him—”Listen, Johnny-boy, you gonna do extraordinary things with your life, you hear? Don’t let this bring you down, Johnny, no, you’ve gotta hurdle that mothaf***a!

    And so he did. Now, you ask, where’s Johnny today? Hm. All I can say is I am one proud, proud mother.

    – Marcy

    P.S. What’s goin’ on NYU Local? I’m cravin’ my daily dose of that good ol’ Franco stuff you’ve got me hooked on if you catch my drift. Baby, I’m a Francophile!

  3. Kendall Gelner says

    @Cobra: You are right about most colleges, but not about the military – they pay YOU to train you, and at the end of four years you have really valuable work experience, probably a skill and a lot more self-disline than anyone coming out of college…. not to mention the ability to go to school even longer at that point with government funding.

  4. John H says

    If it’s not an April Fool’s (which it isn’t because it’s not even remotely funny), then it’s certainly in bad taste.

    For instance, imagine that some credit card company put up the “strangest” (in air quotes because only the first one was remotely strange, though that’s probably the fault of the editor and not the writer) customer service calls on its website. Would people want to do more business with them? I think not. So why would it be a good idea for a university to do the same thing for its potential customers?

  5. Tia Carerra says

    Instead of wasting money on taking out a student loan, getting a useless degree, and being unemployed in the aftermath. Pretty girls should become hookers and strippers and earn as much money as doctors … or more.
    Guys should be drug dealers and earn as much as doctors … or more.

  6. Sean Jones says

    College is not a scam. How (and why?) would they guarentee you a job? That piece of paper opens a lot of doors, but it is all about how you use it and what you chose to get your degree in. That being said there is also no reason to throw the money away going to NYU.. there are many many cheaper alternatives and they all get you that same piece of paper.

  7. says

    These kids aren’t crying because they can’t get a higher education–they’re crying because they don’t get to party at their party school of choice. Pathetic rich kids need to learn to suck it up and go to a crappy school for a few semesters if that’s what it takes to get a degree.

  8. Nick Anderson says

    NYU was my safety school.

    They left me a voice mail inquiring as to why I chose to go elsewhere.

    I didn’t call them back.

  9. David Holt says

    If you go and get a Philosophy degree or a Business degree and hope you’re suddenly going to be a millionaire, then college isn’t a scam, it’s a stupidity tax. If you go and get a degree because you enjoy learning and want to study something you like, then it’s an invaluable experience. If you get a job doing what you love, that’s good planning and a bonus. This idea that college is to get you a job is ridiculous, college is to let you learn new things, getting a job is your own responsibility.

  10. Denise MacDonald says

    I think this article is in really poor taste. My daughter was rejected from NYU last week and no, we didn’t call the admission office – but this kind of proves what I saw when we were visiting. To have a school paper ridicule those that have been rejected after working so hard on their college applications is just wrong. I just figured she wasn’t snooty, superficial or pretentious enough to go to NYU and it looks like I was right. I am very grateful she is going to a different wonderful and prestigious school that is more down to earth and respectful.

  11. Denise MacDonald says

    So you censored my comment. Apparently you can’t take rejection well either. Poor taste article, rude, elitist and disrespectful. On top of that, squashing open discussion through deleting comments. Whoever wrote this needs to get over themselves and admissions should not be sharing this information with the school paper.

  12. says

    @Denise, I direct you to the text right above the box where you typed both your comments:

    “Commenting for the first time? Your comment may not appear immediately, so please be patient. See our policy on comments.”

    First-time commenters are manually approved so we can keep anonymous trolls to a minimum. It’s best for all of us, really.

    So it takes a minute or five for us to do that. Censorship is just not our style. Pause for a moment and take a deep breath before making that accusation.

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