Every now and then I’m trying to help prune our big (> 180 elligible) list of applications. The quality of applications is much better than last year, so we have to be quite critical. Even where the applications aren’t great, the students seem to have lots of ability and enthusiasm.
I don’t want these people to get away from us when we have to reject their applications. Their universities should let them spend the time on these projects even if they aren’t getting paid for it by Google. They’ll learn far more than they would during three months of lectures and assignments. Some of the world’s best software developers would love to mentor them. And they’d be a great advertisment for the university.