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The 110 Demonstrated Interest Colleges: Complete List

Posted by Christine Sarikas | Dec 11, 2020 9:00:00 AM

College Admissions

 

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Have you heard about demonstrated interest colleges and learned that colleges love to admit students who really want to attend their school? Demonstrated interest can be an important part of the application review process, but only at certain schools. Which colleges care about visits, and what are the colleges that track demonstrated interest?

This article lists all the colleges that consider demonstrated interest. Does USC track demonstrated interest? Does Harvard track demonstrated interest? You'll get the answers to those questions in this guide, and you'll also learn what demonstrated interest is, why it matters to schools, and how you can use it to your best advantage.

 

What Is Demonstrated Interest?

Demonstrated interest is when you show a specific college that you're eager to attend their school. You can show demonstrated interest in multiple ways: visiting campus, following the school's social media channels, join a mailing list for prospective students, attend admissions events in your area, scheduling an interview (if the school offers them), and applying Early Decision (only if you're certain that's the top school you want to attend).

Why do colleges care about demonstrated interest? Colleges want students who are genuinely excited to be at their school. Students who care about their college are more likely to get high grades, not drop out or transfer, graduate on time, be involved in student activities, and give back to the school after graduation. A school full of students happy to be there is a much more enriching and motivated place than a school filled with students who are apathetic. So, if you really want to attend a certain school, that'll often make them consider your application more closely.

It's important to realize that, even if you really, really want to attend a certain school, being super passionate about it won't be enough to get you admitted if your grades/test scores/etc. are significantly below those of other applicants. Demonstrated interest is just one of many factors schools consider when reviewing applications, and it's not even the most important factor. It's most useful for students who are on the cusp of being admitted or not. Showing a lot of interest in a school can be the extra boost that pushes you into the "accepted" category. 

 

What Are Colleges That Track Demonstrated Interest?

Below are the colleges that consider demonstrated interest as either important or very important when considering admissions. "Very important" vs. "important" is not a clear-cut distinction and often just reflects the language specific schools choose to use. If a school is in either of the tables, it's to your benefit to show demonstrated interest.

You may notice that a lot of these demonstrated interest colleges are smaller private schools. Public schools don't track demonstrated interest as often for two reasons. First, these schools are often large, with tens of thousands of students, and it would be a significant amount of work to track demonstrated interest among all their applicants every year. Second, large public universities are often the top or default choice for many in-state students. These schools expect and receive a lot of interest across the board.

You may also notice that there are no Ivy League or ultra-competitive schools like Harvard, Stanford, or Yale on this list. These schools already know they garner a lot of interest and are often the top choice for applicants. Therefore, it wouldn't make sense for them to spend resources tracking demonstrated interest.

That leaves lesser-known private schools as the main demonstrated interest colleges. These schools use demonstrated interest to try to determine which applicants really want to attend the school, compared to those who are less enthusiastic.

 

Colleges Where Demonstrated Interest Is Very Important

School Name
State
American University
DC
Antioch College
OH
Bellarmine University
KY
Cooper Union
NY
Dickinson College
PA
Emory & Henry College
VA
Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering
MA
Georgia College
GA
Hampshire College
MA
Hillsdale College
MI
Hiram College
OH
Ithaca College
NY
Manhattanville College
NY
Marymount Manhattan College
NY
Mercer University
GA
Morehouse College
GA
Notre Dame de Namur University
CA
Pacific University
OR
Quinnipiac University
CT
Sacred Heart University
CT
Seton Hall University
NJ
SUNY -- Environmental Science and Forestry
NY
Syracuse University
NY
Thomas Aquinas College
CA
United States Air Force Academy
CO
United States Naval Academy
MD
University of Texas - Tyler
TX
Vanguard University of Southern California
CA
Wabash College
IN
Washington College
MD
Washington University in St. Louis
MO
Webb Institute
NY
Westmont College
CA



Colleges Where Demonstrated Interest Is Important

School Name

State

Allegheny College

PA

Appalachian State University

NC

Assumption College

MA

Auburn University

AL

Augustana College

IL

Austin College

TX

Bates College

ME

Bentley University

MA

Boston University

MA

Butler University

IN

California Baptist University

CA

Case Western Reserve University

OH

Cedarville University

OH

Champlain College

VT

Christopher Newport University

VA

College of the Ozarks

MO

College of Wooster

OH

DePaul University

IL

Denison University

OH

Eckerd College

FL

Elmira College

NY

Emmanuel College - MA

MA

Evergreen State College

WA

Fairfield University

CT

Flagler College

FL

Florida Institute of Technology

FL

Florida Southern College

FL

Gordon College

MA

Guilford College

NC

Hawaii Pacific University

HI

High Point University

NC

Iona College

NY

Kansas State University

KS

Kenyon College

OH

Lehigh University

PA

Louisiana Tech University

LA

Loyola University Chicago

IL

Marlboro College

VT

Merrimack College

MA

Mount St. Mary's University 

MD

Nazareth College

NY

New College of Florida

FL

Oglethorpe University

GA

Pratt Institute

NY

Reed College

OR

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

NY

Roanoke College

VA

Roger Williams University

RI

Rutgers University - Camden

NJ

Saint John's College 

MD

Saint John's College

NM

Samford University

AL

Seattle University

WA

Skidmore College

NY

Soka University of America

CA

St. John's College

MD

St. John's College

NM

St. John Fisher College

NY

Susquehanna University

PA

Trinity College

CT

Union College

NY

United States Merchant Marine Academy

NY

United States Military Academy

NY

University of Arizona

AZ

University of Dayton

OH

University of Evansville

IN

University of Massachusetts - Amherst

MA

University of North Carolina at Asheville

NC

University of Texas - Rio Grande Valley

TX

University of Tulsa

OK

University of Washington - Bothell

WA

University of Wisconsin - La Crosse

WI

Utica College

NY

Western Carolina University

NC

Western Washington University

WA

Wheaton College 

MA

Wingate University

NC



How Can You Determine Which Colleges Care About Visits and Demonstrated Interest?

Colleges can be notoriously cagey about the specific processes they use to determine who gets accepted and who doesn't. They're usually more open about if/how they consider demonstrated interest, but it can still be difficult to figure out what the demonstrated interest colleges are and if a certain school tracks demonstrated interest.

The easiest way to learn is to Google, "[school name] demonstrated interest." If it's one of the colleges that track demonstrated interest, it'll often pop up a webpage that explains how demonstrated interest is considered. If you don't find anything through an internet search, we recommend contacting the admissions office directly. This can be done either through email or a phone call. There's often contact information for prospective students. Use that information and just ask, "Does [school name] consider demonstrated interest during the admissions process?" If the school does, you can follow up with "How important is it?" and/or "What are the best ways to show demonstrated interest?" It's that easy, and then you'll be guaranteed accurate information.

Once you know a school you're interested in tracks demonstrated interest, you should do what you can to show the school how excited you are to attend (without going overboard).

To show interest, get on their mailing lists, and open the emails they send (colleges often track this information). Follow them on social media. If you can visit campus, do that and schedule a tour. If you can't, try to attend a college event near you and speak to someone from the school. If you have a question, contact the admissions office directly. If you need to write a "Why This School" essay, spend a lot of time on it. Above all, work on making your application strong across the board, so that schools will be excited to admit such an accomplished, enthusiastic student.

 

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Summary: Colleges That Track Demonstrated Interest

Which colleges care about visits or other ways of showing interest? Demonstrated interest colleges are those that factor student enthusiasm into the application process. Demonstrated interest colleges tend to be lesser-known private schools because these schools often have the hardest time determining if applicants are genuinely excited to attend their school or are just using their school as a backup choice or safety school.

Once you know the colleges where demonstrated interest matters, you can begin showing it! Don't go overboard, but a campus visit, following them on social media, and contacting an admissions person if you have a question are all great ways to show interest.

 

What's Next?

What factors go into choosing a college? If you're wondering which college you should attend, check out this great guide on how to choose!

Will you be applying for financial aid? This comprehensive guide takes you through the FAFSA application process step by step.

Worried about choosing a major on your college applications? Learn how to navigate the process and make an informed decision. 

 


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Christine Sarikas
About the Author

Christine graduated from Michigan State University with degrees in Environmental Biology and Geography and received her Master's from Duke University. In high school she scored in the 99th percentile on the SAT and was named a National Merit Finalist. She has taught English and biology in several countries.



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