UC changes admission rules for class of 2012

College counselor Regina Risi helps senior Emanuel Ramirez during guidance

Hilda Soto

College counselor Regina Risi helps senior Emanuel Ramirez during guidance

University of California admission system changed their entrance requirements and has some seniors panicking. These new changes will affect where seniors can apply, hence, their future.

UC’s freshman admission requirements are changing and they are going to start with students applying in fall of 2012. The seniors at Animo Pat Brown who want to go to attend a UC will have more difficult and different requirements than the seniors who applied to UCs last year.

APB’s senior counselor Regina Risi said that the changes were planned  two years ago but they are finally putting the plan into effect.

“Anyone who is applying for the fall of 2012 is under this new guidelines for admission,” Risi said.

One of the big changes made to the admission system is that the index that used to tell if you were eligible to apply no longer exist.

“The new index is an index that tells you whether or not you are guaranteed to be admitted,” Risi said. “There are formulas using your GPA and test score from the ACT or SAT, and when you plug those formulas in you come up with a UC score. If your UC score is high enough, then what they are telling you is that you are guaranteed a spot in the UC system.”

This is one of the two pathways for guaranteed admission to the UC system. The second pathway is called Eligibility in the Local Context (ELC).

“Under that system, every high school in California is given a guarantee that the top nine percent of their graduating seniors are guaranteed a spot,” Risi said.

This means that 9 percent of the top students at each high school will have a guaranteed admittance into one of the nine UC schools, compare to the 12 percent of previous years. In the case of APB, only about 12 or 13 students will be guaranteed a spot in the UC system through the ELC program, even though only about 3 of them meet the index.

These changes are affecting many of the seniors who got the news on the first week of school. One example is Senior Edith Gonzalez, who is planning to apply to a UC but whose top college choice is Mount Saint Mary.

“I felt a little discouraged when I heard the news,” Edith said. “UC Santa Barbara and UC Santa Cruz were my second and third options. I felt that my options had become limited to Cal States and Community Colleges.”

Like Edith, senior Evelin Zavala was also disappointed about the news.

“I was having my eye on UC Riverside but it’s hard to get admitted because I don’t have a high GPA, so I think I might go to a CSU,” Evelin Zavala said.

She also thinks that “it’s kind of sad” that not many other seniors will get into a UC.

“It’s not really going to affect me,” Senior Vanessa Guzman said, “but there’s a lot of people that are going to be affected, since they did not have a good GPA, they could still apply, but it’s not guaranteed that they are going to be in the UC system.”

Vanessa said she thinks that its is not a bad thing that they changed the admission system because, like Risi said, “It happened because more and more students in California are achieving at a higher level and were UC eligible, but the UCs didn’t had a place for all of them.”

The class of 2012 is the first class that will have to face these new stressful and difficult changes, which appear that are not going to change for some years. The seniors and their counselor do not know what will happen with the rest of students who do not meet the index or are not ELC eligible.

Risi said she can only encourage them to do their very best on their applications and trying to improve their tests scores.

As for the juniors, the class of 2013, she said she recommends that they work really hard on their GPA and taking the ACT and SAT very seriously.