So, thinking about this is interesting to me. The question is simple enough. Reading the Adcoms, it seems they feel like they have read all of the various essays before, and there are only a relatively small number of types out there, such as "The Victim". It sounds to me like these people are suffering from compassion burnout. But, they are the ones making the decision, so we will take their viewpoint as "accurate". Then consider that everyone is supposed to have the same volunteer activities, and the same extracurriculars. I have even heard of multiple competitive eaters admitted to the same year in one medical school. Furthermore, every applicant is supposed to be around 3.8 - 4.0 GPA (or probably at least 3.6 or so). For the MCAT, somewhere between the low 30's to high 30's, with very few in the 40's. But then the Adcoms say that such high scorers can be arrogant, and so it may be that they either enter the interview with too much confidence for what they want from applicants, or the Adcoms resent an applicant having scored higher than them. Either seems probable, for certain personalities. The point is, it doesn't seem like the Adcoms are super-impressed with high MCATs if they don't already like the candidate beforehand. So. To them, the personal essays are all the same, the activities are all the same, and the scores are all generally the same. Now, I'll grant you that a social mercantilism is obviously in effect in this society and the admissions committees seem to generally have absorbed that through their socialization. That would make a difference, but there are also people who are not part of any group that practices political lobbying or possesses political organization--and yet they still get in. So, although this is, statistically, quite obviously a factor, group sympathies don't quite explain everything. When I look at it, what on earth are the Adcoms making their decisions based upon if everyone really is so similar? I have had a lot of unique experiences, etc, and I am sure there are other people like that too, but for reasons of burnout, experience, or whatever, the Adcoms don't seem to speak like there is much uniqueness in the applications they read. What then is the origin of a decision? Flipping a coin, or a process about as random?