Every year, colleges across the country consider potential students, and when the admission process is over, some celebrate acceptance.
But in one Downtown Los Angeles high school, students celebrate the opposite: rejection.
“If you’re going to be resilient, then you have to face something that didn’t happen and didn’t go your way,” said Lynda McGee.
McGee is a college counselor at Downtown Magnets High School and also the founder of their college rejection party. She’s trying to teach students that rejection is part of life, and sometimesit has nothing to do with them specifically.
“Colleges have their own objectives. ‘We need more football players who play violin.’ I don’t know. If you don’t fit what they are looking for, it doesn’t mean you’re not good enough; it just means it’s not what they’re looking for right now and they chose someone else,” McGee said.
At the rejection party, students line up and, one by one, feed their rejection letters into a shredder. Those rejections are from colleges across the entire country, like Dartmouth, Columbia, Princeton, Claremont McKenna and Pomona College, to name a few.
This year’s rejection king was Andy Leang, who was turned down by 17 colleges.
“The highest number I got was nine from a friend, and then I counted how many I had and I was like ‘Oh, I won,’” he said with a laugh.
But it all worked out. Andy’s going to UC Santa Barbara, while others at the party are going to UCLA and even Harvard.
“I’m glad I got those rejections because at the end of the day I’m ending up where I need to be,” said Harvard-bound Alice Gonzalez.
So, for those who weren’t accepted to their first choice for college, maybe it’s time to move forward and take the rejection party’s pledge: “I solemnly pledge to realize that my potential and promise is never determined by the college I attend, and ice cream heals all wounds.”
Source: NBC Los Angeles
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