As most college-bound high school students know, getting into an Ivy League school is beyond competitive.
Of the record number of 39,506 applicants applying to Harvard University this year, only 2,056 were accepted. As for Yale, they also received a record number of applications, 32,900. Of that number, only 2,272 were admitted to the class of 2021.
Every kid receiving their acceptance notification from either school understands the unique elation of being part of such a select few, but four people in particular were not just elated, but stunned as well.
The reason for such a feeling of shock was that of the few thousand students granted entry to these elite schools for the upcoming freshman year, four were brothers — quadruplets.
Nigel, Zach, Aaron, and Nick Wade were each waiting to hear from the schools they applied for when Nick checked his phone during track practice and saw that he had received acceptance emails from the schools. Unable to contain his excitement, he immediately alerted his three brothers, who were also at track practice — Aaron was in the locker room, Nigel was stretching, and Zach was too focused on doing exercises to be thinking about email.
Quadruplets head off to the Ivy League…. https://t.co/oKzVsvGF4U
— Brent Staples (@BrentNYT) April 5, 2017
Zach wanted to wait until practice was over to check his email, but the brothers were too wired up to allow that. They checked their emails and convinced Zach to look at his as well. That’s when they discovered that they were all given the green light to attend both schools in the fall.
“Honestly, to have one child from a family be accepted to a school like this is amazing, but for all four to be accepted — I just don’t, I don’t know how it happened,” said Zach.
Although they are all in shock and beyond excited that together they have achieved this wonderful academic feat, there is the concern about the financing of this expensive endeavor. Between the cost of Yale, which totals $64,000, and Harvard’s $63,000 price tag, the family will be taking on a huge financial burden for all four boys to attend the universities. Understandably, “Financial aid is going to be a big player in our decision,” says Nick Wade.
The boys’ father, a General Electric employee, and their mother, a school principal, say that even though they’ve saved for their kids’ education, it won’t be enough to cover the Harvard and Yale tuition prices for all four boys. Thinking about his and his wife’s eventual retirement, Mr. Wade notes that they want to avoid putting any extra liability on their children in later years.
“We have to make sure that we’re helping them down the road by not being a financial burden on them when we get older,” he says.
Luckily, both Harvard and Yale pledge to meet the full demonstrated financial need of students they admit.
— Meghan Wesley (@MeghanWesley) April 5, 2017
Outside of the financial considerations, the brothers are taking time to appreciate their joint achievements and to weigh their options. The East Lakota High School seniors were all accepted to several other schools besides Harvard and Yale. The list of acceptances includes Georgetown, Stanford, Duke, Johns Hopkins, and Vanderbilt University among other highly competitive institutions.
The gifted scholars, who all have diverse interests, say that their main concern in applying to the most elite schools was not prestige. According to Aaron, “We didn’t go into this thinking, ‘Oh, we’re going to apply to all these schools and get into all of them.’ It wasn’t so much about the prestige or so much about the name as it was — it was important that we each find a school where we think that we’ll thrive and where we think that we’ll contribute.”
[Featured Image by f11photo/Shutterstock]