College admissions offices are jazzing up acceptance packages—adding confetti, T-shirts, internet videos—to lure students, and are also trying to keep up with the times in their rejections, US News and World Report writes. But some efforts have backfired, with students hurt by brutally short, electronic turndowns—including text messages as brief as “Admissions decision: Deny”—and high schools complaining that midday e-mails disrupt classrooms.
Even accepted students say the fanfare is no replacement for a traditional personalized letter. One senior says a letter that quoted her application won her over: “I’m not just a number to them.” Cost-cutting, tree-saving digital announcements seem here to stay, though admissions officers are listening to the criticism: Stanford has softened e-rejections, while others have rescheduled emails to avoid interfering with school. (Read more college admissions stories.)