A report finds that the university told applicants that money didn't matter even as they explicitly accepted students on the basis of income.
For years, George Washington University, one of the country's most expensive colleges, promised families they didn't consider income in the admissions process while secretly rejecting students who couldn't afford tuition.
That was the upshot of a Monday article in the The GW Hatchet that, as Inside Higher Ed delicately put it, has left the the university "rushing to explain itself." Until last week, the school claimed be "need-blind," meaning that it supposedly admitted applicants no matter how much tuition they could afford to pay. In fact, the university's admissions office had been taking financial need into account all along. The school has now officially rebranded itself as "need-aware."
Here's how Laurie Koehler, the GW's new provost for enrollment management, described their process:
“We have our internal preliminary decision of admit or waitlist or deny, and then we run the numbers and then we go, 'Okay, we have to do a little bit of shuffling here,'” Koehler said. She said the decision only impacts students who are not among GW's top applicants.