College Admission Talk Recap

For those who couldn’t attend the Sept. 17th talk at Princeton Learning Cooperative, here’s a brief summary of the information shared by the admissions officers from Rutgers, Rider, and Mercer County Community College. Send me your questions!


  • Applicants should submit a traditional-looking transcript plus an explanation of how learning took place. 
  • Demonstrate a college preparatory program–reading, writing, math, science, social studies, plus 2 years of a second language–and that you took the most challenging courses available to you
  • ACT or SAT required; either test is equally acceptable
  • 60% admit rate
  • GED was suggested, but is not required; the admissions officer’s perspective was that a student might need the GED “down the road” so take it now for insurance. Of course, another way to think about this is that one could always take the GED if needed so there’s no urgency to take it pre-emptively. 
  • At this time, NJ is still debating whether to continue to offer the GED and/or a different exam
  • CLEP credits are not accepted
  • C or better from college classes taken on other campuses earns you Rutgers credit
  • High school students are eligible to take Rutgers classes while still in high school only if they can demonstrate that they’ve exhausted the course possibilities at their high schools
  • No minimum age to take a class, but you must be 16 or older to live on campus
  • Courses cost $400/credit plus fees
Mercer County Community College
  • Open enrollment
  • SAT 540/530 or higher or ACT 21 or higher exempts you from placement test
  • High school students are eligible to take classes at Mercer
  • CLEP credits accepted
  • Visit to learn how/whether credits will transfer to 4-yr colleges
  • Homeschoolers who are not enrolled in an accredited high school (e.g. Clonlara) are ineligible for NJStars
  • $142/credit
Rider University
  • Applicants should submit traditional-looking transcript
  • Syllabus may be required for some courses listed on the transcript
  • Must demonstrate graduation from high school–this can be self-certified
  • Interviews are offered and suggested for homeschoolers
  • Some CLEP credits are accepted
  • High school students are eligible to take Rider courses
  • College level writing is very important for success in college
  • $550/credit