The problem with computer science

Colleges across the country–liberal arts colleges and research universities alike–are struggling to adjust to the unprecedented explosion of interest in the computer science major. As the New York Times reports, Undergraduate programs at research universities are ratcheting up admission benchmarks beyond what anyone would have imagined a decade ago, and even liberal arts colleges are considering the unthinkable: capping the number of computer science majors. It’s not just a factor of the emergence of a critical field with immediate, high-salaried application in industry. It’s also about the difficulty in attracting top faculty when faculty salaries are dwarfed by those in private industry. How do you serve so many students when you can’t find the faculty?

It was great having our daughter work with Nate. He helped her hone the message of her essay. He would say “I think you should pull out the importance of this …or elaborate on that”. She would listen to him and respect his input. It was nice having someone else involved in the process, as it is a stressful time and the students aren’t necessarily receptive to the input from their parents. He was a well respected admissions officer at Williams and he has seen thousands of applications. He knows how to help students compose their story in an appealing way. He spent time with Nate late in the process, basically with the essay, but he spent time to get to know Julie and then really helped her to refine her essays. We highly recommend Nate’s understanding and ability to work with young adults and his expertise in the admissions process.

Parent, Bates College ’13

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