Congratulations, you were admitted to several colleges! But you can only attend one, so now what do you do? Once you've made your final college decision, you let that college of choice know. This will allow you to start exploring next steps for getting set up at your college of choice (completing the housing application, registering for courses, submitting any required health documents, etc.). But what about all of those other colleges that offered you admission?
The most respectful thing to do once you've made your college decision is let the other colleges know that you will not be attending their institution. Notifying colleges is important so that they can get a better sense of their yield (the number of students to attend after being offered admission). This might free up space for students who are on the waitlist or for whom admission decisions have not yet been made. Even if you have not yet decided where you will attend, you can notify the colleges that you have already ruled out. Make sure that you are 100% certain about this decision, as it can be difficult, and sometimes impossible, to change your mind later.
Most schools make this process seamless and easy. You'll likely log into your student portal, and there is often a space to accept the offer of admission, or decline the offer of admission. If it does not appear as seamless or obvious, the alternative is to email your admission representative (or if you don't know who that is, or if it's not obvious on the website, you can email the office of admissions directly) regarding your decision to attend a different institution.
A Sample Email
Dear Mr. Bennett,
Thank you for taking the time to consider my application for the class of 2025 at Weber State University. I appreciate the offer of admission, but I have decided to attend a different institution. At this point, I would like to withdraw my application and admission decision from your student pool.
Thank you for all of your time and effort.
Chris P. Bacon
Everyone who works in an admission office is also a person. They spend countless hours reviewing applications and making incredibly difficult decisions. Thanking them for their time, energy, and support can go a long way!
Good luck (but I know you won't need it),
Jessica Chermak, LPC, CEP
Independent College Counselor
Co-Founder of Virtual College Counselors