Seniors Bypass Normal College Admissions Process

While some seniors are reeling from an overload of SATs, college essays and applications, a few lucky people, including seniors Xi Kuang, Arla Rosenzweig, Ryan Hanni and Kellie Welch, have already achieved college acceptance without going through the regular process.

Xi Kuang
Xi was admitted to the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles.
Xi first found out about FIDM during her freshman year, when a FIDM administrator presented to her French class.
“[I’ve wanted to be a designer] for at least two or three years,” Xi said. “Being a designer will bring out the best of me and my abilities to create.”
Xi wants to work as a designer for a fashion company and hopes to start her own line.
To apply to FIDM, Xi had to fill out a general application with her personal information and write an essay about herself and why she was interested in FIDM, although standardized tests such as the SAT were not required.
She sent in her application in early November and then had two interviews with the school. The director asked questions to try to get to know Xi. After the interview, the director told her that she would be admitted to FIDM.
“I’m really excited to go there,” Xi said. “It feels so good. [I’m] so relieved and stress-free.”

Arla Rosenzweig
Arla was recruited for the gymnastics team at UC Berkeley.
Arla started doing gymnastics when she was five and has been competing since she was nine.
She began the recruiting process by e-mailing the coaches of 10 schools that interested her. Several schools expressed interest in Arla, but eventually she chose UC Berkeley.
“I decided to go to Cal because I think it is the best fit for me in both academics and gymnastics,” Arla said. “The team seemed really close, and I got a great feel from just visiting the campus.”
Arla was offered a full-ride scholarship to Cal. She verbally committed last April and signed a letter of intent on Tuesday, November 11, making her decision official.
“It feels great to already be into a college because I feel like all the work I’ve put into the sport has really paid off,” Arla said. “I’m definitely excited… and I can’t wait to be part of such a great team.”

Ryan Hanni
Ryan has committed to UC Santa Barbara for its swim team.
Ryan is a dedicated swimmer who first began swimming competitively when he was seven.
Last July, Ryan’s father and swim coach first approached the UCSB coaches at a swim meet. Ryan communicated with the coaches through e-mail for several weeks, after which he visited UCSB.
During his visit, he practiced with the UCSB swim team, stayed in a dorm with a team member, toured the campus and attended a class. After the visit, Ryan was offered a $4,000 per year scholarship to UCSB. If he performs well on the swim team, he will be able to increase his scholarship.
Ryan then signed a letter of intent on Wednesday, November 12, choosing UCSB over his original dream of swimming for the University of Southern California.
“I decided to go to UCSB because they were very friendly,” Ryan said. “College swimming is something that I look forward to and can’t wait to try out.”

Kellie Welch
The University of Washington recruited Kellie for its soccer team. Kellie, who began playing soccer when she was five, currently plays on a competitive club team and competes in tournaments throughout southern California and Nevada.
Starting her sophomore year, Kellie sent out e-mails to coaches with her profile and a schedule of her games.
In her junior year, Kellie was contacted by the coaches from the University of Washington, Northwestern, the University of San Francisco, Bucknell, Brown and the Air Force Academy, among others, but she eventually chose the University of Washington.
“I loved the campus, the weather, the location and the coaches,” Kellie said. “I also felt academically University of Washington is a good school. … It was the perfect school for me.”
Although Kellie still has to hear back from the school, she said that “it was nice only having to do one application” and is excited to be part of the team.