Hello, I am a junior and I need a good list of reaches, targets, and safeties. I am in an awkward situation in which my my GPA does not reflect neither my AP test scores nor my SAT.
I have taken the SAT twice (once in an honor program during seventh grade) and my current score is 2360. I took this last year, and I think I am content with it. I have heard that taking it over to improve anything less than 100 points is looked down upon. My teachers really like me and I believe that my recommendations will reflect that.
The major drawback may be my GPA which is a 3.6 in a mildly competitive school. We do not rank, but I would not be in the top ten percent (most of them average a 1980 or so SAT). I have taken very rigorous courses (especially in the maths and sciences; I will have completed Multivariable Calculus/Linear Algebra by end of high school) and maintain a very high test average (97.8 unweighted in all my classes).
During the summers I have participated in two programs which may catch the eye of the college counselor. I went to the Yale Ivy Scholars during the interim summer between tenth and eleventh grade. This is not like most of the very expensive and non-selective classes at schools such as Harvard and Yale. During my interview for TASP (a selective program for the humanities) they said that it is likely that I would be able to participate. The notification for the scholarship is this later this month. I have been working on a huge science project which has been awarded 1st in many competitions and I will enter it for STS next year. I may also participate in RSI.
I am on the top team in the state (and captain of it) for debate and mock trial. I spend a great deal of time working in debate because it is something I love. Other prominent ECs include first viola in honor orchestra and principal in all state. I also started a fund which provided tutors for less well off kids in the community. Overall we have been a success and have been recognized in the newspaper many times. I will be the editor-in-chief for the newspaper next year.
I run for varsity cross country and will be the captain next year... I also do varsity track (co captain) and seconds swimming. I have been the class president for the last three years and for my next year the upcoming elections will determine my position. While my GPA is not high enough to be inducted into the NHS, I got in because we have an exception for students who have taken over six APs with an overall average of 4.5 (I have an average of 5.0). I will have taken close to fifteen APs by the time I graduate.
I am afraid my GPA will be my bane. I have some prominent people in academia I have established a relationship with (especially some of the professors at Ivy Scholars) and I am not sure if they are allowed to write me a recommendation. I have been recognized in my state in math and writing (Scholastic Art and Writing), and have other recognitions.
This being said I would like to go to graduate school, and while my family will be able to comfortably pay through my education, the cheaper the better (to the extent of good colleges, my safety will be a small private and/or the state). What would be a good list for me, I will give you a basic list of my "dreams".
- Upenn (Huntsman, Fisher, or life sciences and management... CAS/Wharton would be great also)
- Harvard (legacy)
- Duke (legacy)
- Yale (legacy)
- College of William and Mary
- Deep Springs
I am sure these are all reaches, I need a strong list of targets.
You guys are amazing, thanks for the help!