In this extensive and candid interview, Aidan and Ash spend time with the brilliant and dynamic leader of Duke’s undergraduate admissions, Christoph Guttentag. Mr. Guttentag has been with Duke for 29 years, and served as the Dean of Undergraduate Admissions since 2006. All in this week’s episode of Hold Me Back. Listen to the episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and your other favorite podcast platforms.
Duke University: Interview with Christoph Guttentag, Dean of Undergraduate Admissions
In this extensive and candid interview, Aidan and Ash spend time with the brilliant and dynamic leader of Duke’s undergraduate admissions, Christoph Guttentag. Mr. Guttentag has been with Duke for 29 years, and served as the Dean of Undergraduate Admissions since 2006. During his tenure, the Duke student body has seen significant increases in diversity, creativity, and inclusiveness while maintaining its standards of excellence. Join Aidan and Ash in a fun, lively, and incredibly illuminating interview with one of the most respected leaders in the global admissions community. This episode covers everything from applying to Duke to the life of a Dean of Undergraduate Admissions. Here’s a small sample of what you will hear in this episode:
- Why is the admissions rate dropping?
- What do colleges look for in applicants?
- How does the college admissions process work for Duke?
- Do colleges consider the “standout factor?”
- How do colleges view legacy?
- What rubric does Duke use to evaluate applicants?
- Is the college admissions process fair?
- How many applications did Duke receive during this interview?
Who was more convincing: Aidan or Ash? Vote at the bottom of this post.
Enjoy the show! Check out the show notes below for much more detail.
- Intro to Christoph Guttentag
- [0:00] This episode of Hold Me Back is brought to you by Motto. Get started with Motto at Aspen Dental or MottoAligners.com
- [0:43] Welcome to Hold Me Back
- [0:46] Meet Aidan (Gen Z) & Ash (Gen X)
- [0:52] What is The College Admission Series (CAS)?
- [1:25] Who is Christoph Guttentag?
- [2:46] Duke University
- Interview with Christoph Guttentag
- [5:21] What number did Christoph want Aidan & Ash to write down?
- [5:34] Podcast
- [11:05] Why is the admissions rate dropping?
- [12:04] Baby Bust, Baby Boom
- [13:34] Marketing
- [15:41] Income
- [17:24] Do competitiveness and rankings play a role in recruiting?
- [20:18] Why aren’t colleges more transparent with admissions?
- [23:21] Why are the students who care about the admissions process the least the most attractive to colleges?
- [27:11] Hold Me Back Episode #12: Grades
- [27:43] What do colleges look for in applicants?
- [29:26] Final Four
- [34:23] How does the college admissions process work for Duke?
- [39:39] What does “Double Click” mean?
- [39:51] Management Consulting
- [40:05] Internet
- [40:55] How do admissions officers make decisions?
- [44:25] State University
- [44:38] Does Duke use predictive analytics?
- [47:19] Predictive GPA (Grade Point Average)
- [48:21] How does Christoph view the Pile Theory?
- [49:02] Oboe
- [50:45] STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics), ACT
- [57:12] Valedictorian
- [59:08] Do colleges consider the “standout factor?”
- [1:00:02] Brand
- [1:01:07] Elevator Pitch
- [1:03:31] Are the buzzwords for college admissions legitimate?
- [1:04:28] QR Code
- [1:08:26] This episode of Hold Me Back is brought to you by Motto. Get started with Motto at Aspen Dental or MottoAligners.com
- [1:09:26] What is Early Decision?
- [1:11:14] Stanford University, Harvard University
- [1:12:07] What is Restrictive Early Action?
- [1:16:14] What is Demonstrated Interest?
- [1:20:47] How do colleges view legacy?
- [1:24:12] SAT
- [1:24:29] How much do test scores matter?
- [1:28:12] Is testing a factor for applicants that check all the other boxes?
- [1:31:19] Anxiety
- [1:31:32] What rubric does Duke use to evaluate applicants?
- [1:40:01] Are colleges acknowledging the mental health crisis could be tied to the admissions process?
- [1:44:27] How does Christoph view independent college consultants?
- [1:48:01] Nonprofit
- [1:48:36] Is the college admissions process fair?
- [1:52:28] What should you say to your child about college admissions?
- [1:58:06] What would Christoph change about the college admissions process?
- [1:59:12] College Rankings
- [1:59:58] U.S. News
- [2:02:12] How do you know which sources are credible about college admissions?
- [2:06:29] The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal
- [2:06:56] UC Santa Barbara
- [2:07:28] CEO (Chief Executive Officer)
- [2:09:48] How many applications did Duke receive during this interview?
- [2:12:16] Thank you for listening! Follow Hold Me Back on HoldMeBack.com and on Instagram & Facebook
- [2:12:19] Leave us a 5-star written review on Apple Podcasts
- [2:12:24] Who was more convincing: Aidan or Ash? Vote below
Thank you for listening to Hold Me Back. To hear more episodes, follow Hold Me Back at HoldMeBack.com.
WHAT IS HOLD ME BACK?
Gen X and Gen Z live together, but we occupy different worlds. As the generational gap widens and conventional wisdom on parenting and education fails, is it even possible to understand one another? In this unique son-and-father podcast, Aidan & Ash ElDifrawi hash out a new contract between generations, forcing them to violate comfort zones on today’s most charged topics: social media and screen time, bullying and loneliness, inequality and privilege, sex and drugs, education and etiquette, even politics, religion, and sports. All to uncover a path toward greater harmony and a hopeful future for the next generation.