WASHINGTON — George Washington University is apologizing for misrepresenting how it considers financial need in admissions decisions.
The school said until a few days ago that requests for financial aid don’t affect admissions decisions. It now says that it considers some applicants’ financial need in the final stages of choosing its incoming class. The university issued a statement Tuesday apologizing for not clearly communicating how it factors need into its decisions.
The school’s associate provost for enrollment management, Laurie Koehler, says the school first reviews applications without considering financial need. The office does consider need in some cases in a final review, she said. Koehler said the “need-aware” policy affects roughly 10 percent of the 22,000 prospective students who apply each year.
“It is our goal to make sure that all of our admissions practices and policies, including how we factor need into the final admissions decisions, are communicated clearly to prospective students and parents. I apologize that our communications did not fully meet that standard,” Koehler said.
The story was first reported by the school’s student newspaper, The GW Hatchet, which published a story Monday after an interview with Koehler. The paper reported that as recently as Saturday, admissions representatives told prospective students at an information session that their applications would be judged without regard to financial aid. And, the school’s admissions website said that financial aid requests “do not affect admissions decisions.” That language has since been removed.
The school’s president said in a statement that he “would love to see us one day become a fully need-blind institution, and I will continue to do all I can to achieve that goal.”
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