From College Confidential:

I spend a lot of time around Williams as a local and an interested applicant. Here’s what I’ve heard from admission information sessions (i’ve attended three this summer…since they all provide somewhat different details)

It doesn’t to help be a legacy anymore. Last year…they only took legacies that were going to be admitted anyway. Part of the problem is that they have significantly more legacies applying than ever before. So unless your parents will be donating a building…

This is consistent with my analysis. Unsophisticated applicants sometimes take heart from the fact that the admission rate for legacies is much higher than that for non-legacies. This (true) statistic results, I think, from the Admissions Office giving a “heads up” to legacy applicants about their chances. Williams will tell a legacy with no hooks and 1300 SATs not to bother to apply. A non-legacy with the same statistics and, therefore, zero chance, will be allowed, even encouraged, to send in an application.

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