There seem to be just two responses to the latest essay going viral on the Internet. Either you love the open letter in the Wall Street Journal dubbed "To All the Colleges That Rejected Me" or you hate it. No matter which side you're on, Suzy Lee Weiss, the teenage girl who wrote it, has a message for you.
Rejection is good for our kids. Just look what it did for her.
Weiss, whose op-ed has her being called an entitled brat by some, a fresh and sardonic wit by others, is still in high school at Pittsburgh's Taylor Allderdice High School. And yet she already landed herself a prime slice of publishing real estate in one of the nation's top papers. As she's since admitted, it was being rejected from her dream school that made a difference:
My friends and family have told me to write my whole life, but I needed the fire under my tush to really get writing.
And what a fire. Her essay on the college admissions process assesses the need for students to go to extreme lengths to be noticed by the nation's top colleges.
Love it or hate it, it's making waves. It's given Weiss a new direction in her life, pushed her toward writing, for which she clearly has a knack.
Moms? Dads? There's a message in this, and it isn't about whether or not your kids are diversifying their extracurriculars enough to garner the attention of the Ivy League.
We've been handed the prime example for why kids need to be allowed to fall down, why kids need to be rejected.
It will hurt. But it will also force them to readjust their sails and chart a new course in life.
Harsh? Of course. But such is life. If a kid can't handle a "no" by the time they're applying for colleges, frankly you've failed them. They need to be able to duck and roll when the punches come out, so they can quickly bounce back onto their feet.
And what a lesson that is for kids if they CAN do that! To get a rejection from a college can be a crushing blow, but for a kid to realize that they can recover from it is awfully empowering ... and at the best time too. Nothing like a message that you don't need Mom and Dad to fix everything for you just as you're about to leave the nest.
What do you think of college rejections? Are they good for kids? How would YOUR kid handle it?
Image via stockmonkeys.com/Flickr