UMD early action decisions leave students shocked


Photo by Danielle Land

Seniors Jahnavee Chakravarty and Arya Ramachandran visit UMD on a field trip to McKeldin Library.

Throughout the grueling experience of the college admissions process, the University of Maryland has been long-overlooked as a ‘safety school’ for students.

In particular, for students looking to escape the familiarity of Maryland, the moderately selective state school falls short in terms of appeal for students in comparison to out-of-state options. Sunny California, the hustle and bustle of New York City, the tropical vices of Florida; the common nature of the suburbs of College Park pales in contrast. However, with an acceptance rate of 52% in 2022, the school remains selective; something that has gone under the radar for early-decision applicants this year. “This year’s admissions round was just a brutal reminder that schools are more selective than you’d think,” senior Angelina Hermosa-Roman said.

Upon the release of early decisions on Feb. 3, seniors were left confused at the results. “The UMD decisions this year surprised me. I know UMD has gotten harder to get into but I was genuinely shocked at the amount of rejections; UMD seemed to only accept the top of the top, which was honestly a bummer, ” senior Talia Giro said.

University of Maryland’s student body is comprised of 90% early action applicants, and only 10% regular decision applicants. For applicants, this early action round was considered to be ensuring their spot at UMD; however, decisions left those who were not accepted at an unexpected loss. “For this year’s seniors, it comes down to the fact that the early action pool at College Park went up to 50,000 students. And now with test optional still being in use, they are collecting less information about each student,” counselor Robert Kurtz said.

With such seemingly unpredictable results and decreasing acceptance rates each passing year, the future for rising seniors may look grim. “For the class of 2024 it comes down to our students being very aware of Maryland’s 26 admission review factors, such as high school achievement, progression of performance, breadth of life experiences, geographic origin, and more,” Kurtz said.

Figuring out where you would want to attend for your next four years of higher education is understandingly intimidating. Having a system of safety, target and reach schools helps categorize these decisions in a manageable way, however, this recent release of UMD decisions may have toppled this balance of a safety versus a target school. “After the results this year, I realized that UMD was a lot more selective and particular with the applicants they chose than I’d expected, especially since many people around me had a lot of achievements and qualifications yet still didn’t get in,” senior Katya Sorokin said.