Hi guys, I am a senior in high-school. I am a white female, who goes to a fairly large public high-school.
Dartmouth is my dream school and would most definitely be my top choice if I were to ever be accepted. I would have applied ED, but chose instead to apply Restrictive Early Action to a close second choice school that is more realistic for my stats. I am just wondering if there is any shot at all here for an acceptance..
-3.93 un-weighted GPA (out of 4)
-4.45 weighted GPA.
-I am 5th in my class currently, out of a senior class of 488 students.
-SAT's: 1410/2130 (690 CR, 720 Math, 720 Writing).
I am going to be taking the SATs one last time. I was supposed to take again this month but they were cancelled in my area because of Hurricane Sandy. I have heard that they will be rescheduled for November 17th, but I am not completely sure.
-ACT's: 31 composite (34- English, 32-Math, 31- Reading, 26- Science) with a 10 on the essay.
I have taken ALL honors classes throughout my high-school career, including:
Honors World History, Honors World Lit, Honors US Lit, Honors US History 1,Honors Biology,Honors Chemistry, Honors Physics, Honors Geometry, Honors Alg.2 (took Alg. 1 in middle school), Honors Pre-Calc, Honors French 3, Honors French 4, Honors French 5
And started taking AP classes my junior year (which is when my school begins to allow students to take them)
AP CLASSES (Scores)
1. AP US History- 4
1. AP Lang and Comp-4
My schedule this year is: Honors Western Civilization, Marine Science Lab, AP Calc AB, AP French, AP Statistics, AP Macro/Micro Econ, AP English Lit, AP Psychology
I also have taken the following subject tests..
US History- 670
Math 2- 670
-Key Club (Treasurer) (9,10,11,12)
-French Honor Society (Vice-President) (10,11,12)
-Social Justice Committee (Vice-President) (9,10,11,12)
-Gay Straight Alliance (11,12)
-National Honor Society (12) (School only allows two opportunities to apply- tail end of junior year, and very beginning of senior year, my application wasn't strong enough last year, so I waited until this year to apply)
-Bottle Cappers, which is a club that works to educate elementary and middle school kids on the dangers and effects of drugs and alcohol (9,10,11,12)
-I was invited into all of my class councils- you had to apply each year- so I was apart of the freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior councils (9,10,11,12)
-Model UN,went to a large conference in Hershey Park, PA. (10)
-Volunteered at a Vacation Bible School at a Lutheran Church, as a camp counselor to first and second graders (9,10,11)
-Volunteered at a local nature conservancy for various different things (Summer Camps, boy scout event leader, girl scout event leader, etc) (11,12)
-Best Day Foundation- A foundation that brings autistic children to the beach for the day to have the opportunity to spend time with a team leader (my job) and boogie board, surf, make sand castles, etc.) (9,10)
-I was invited into my school district's SAT 700's Club
-Have been on the honor roll/high honor roll all throughout high-school
-Won two awards from Kean University's Diversity Council
-Was Student of the Month in the foreign language department of my school in April 2012
-Was a higher scorer on the AMC (American Math Competition) in 2012, advanced to a second competition with that score, but cannot currently remember the name of the second competition
Paid Work Experiences:
-Currently hold a part-time job at a local italian ice place, about 12 wk/ every week per year
-I used to work part-time (12 wk/each year per year) at a local pizza place, until they went out of business.
Essay: I am proud of my essay and feel like it communicates very well who I am and what I have to offer to any school.
Teacher Recs: Good
Peer Rec: I have asked a very close friend who I know is a good writer.
Honestly? I don't think your chances are great. Your test scores--especially CR, SATII, and ACT--are lowish for an unhooked student at D across the board. In your favor: excellent GPA and class rank, and you sound like a great kid. I certainly hope you get in, if D is where you want to go. But I have no doubt that you will be accepted at great schools that you will love. Just make sure to cast a wide net. Do you want to tell us where else you are applying? Maybe we could make some suggestions.
@JCato13- I unfortunately do not have any sports, music, or theater. I did play on an intramural softball team through my junior year (age limit is 17). I had been playing with this league since I was 7 years old. However, I was never quite good enough to play on my high school team, but continued to play outside of school because it remained a passion of mine. I don't have this listed on my application, though. Should I? I always thought I should not list it because it wasn't through my high school and was not extremely competitive.
Also, I do not have this listed above but I write lyrical poetry/songs . I was able to have some of my lyrical poetry selected to be published in my school's literary magazine. I do not know if this holds any weight since it was my school's magazine, though. I need to check again, but I am fairly certain that I do not have this listed on my application. Again, should it be?
This poetry is pretty much the extent to my creativity, unfortunately. My strengths are my GPA, class rank, EC's and for most schools except D, my test scores.
@Consolation Thanks so much for your opinion, I agree with you on a lot of terms. I know that my CR score, although it is generally not bad (94th percentile nationally), is not as competitive as those who are typically accepted to D. My SAT 2 scores are also a little low, too. As for my ACT score, I am not submitting it. I feel that my SAT is better than it and is a better reflection of who I am as a student. I am taking the ACTs one last time in December, and on the off chance that I score 32/33+, then I will submit ACT scores. I took SATs for my last time yesterday.
I feel that I have a strong essay. Very strong? I feel that it is hard to judge oneself in that way. I wrote my essay on my best friend who committed suicide during my sophomore year of high school. I know, right away, you're all thinking "This has to be a sob story." But, in my opinion, it is far from it. I touch very lightly on the act of the suicide itself in the beginning of my essay, to avoid being morbid. I spend the rest of my essay discussing how this suicide has forced me to grow and to learn, and also discussing some of the things that my best friend's suicide have driven me to do (fundraising, organization of a suicide prevention walk, etc.) I feel that the end of my essay is very powerful as well. I would be extremely delighted if anybody here would like to read my essay. I will directly message it to you.
As for other schools, I have cast a wide net (a very wide net, actually.) This is mostly because I did visit a lot of schools and did like almost all of them, and because the ones that I feel the strongest about may be difficult to get into. For this reason, if I am not accepted to my top choices, I do want to have a fairly wide choice of schools to select from, as selfish as this may seem.
I mentioned earlier having applied Restrictive Early Action to a close second-choice school that I felt was more realistic for my statistics instead of ED at D. This school was Boston College. Although I feel very very strongly about Dartmouth, I feel similarly strong about BC. Another school that I feel very strong about is the University of Richmond, which, because I am not in-state, will be difficult for me to get into.
I am applying to 15 schools in total (I know, I'm crazy). Just to give you an idea, some of the other schools I am applying to are Northeastern University, Boston University , Franklin and Marshall, Lafayette, Muhlenberg, William and Mary, Amherst, Carnegie Mellon, and Colgate. I have a few clear safeties as well.
Thank you so much! Any other opinions would be very much appreciated.
Also, @Consolation, when you say I am an "unhooked" student, are you taking into consideration that I am first generation? Many have told me that this can be a good hook and can make a difference in some cases. However, I am not sure if this holds any weight in D admissions. If it does not, then I am, indeed, "unhooked", unfortunately.
Test scores are good but glad to hear you're retaking... It's a good idea. EC's are pretty run of the mill (I've got pretty much the same deal going on, as do lots of others--lack of depth/differentiability). Course load for this year is great! Seems like you haven't had a lot of ap classes up to then though. Work on those essays!! That could easily be the deciding factor. (Chance me back please? Chance Me: Stanford/UChicago)........
and @kcj2196, the reason why I wasn't able to have a lot of AP classes before this year is because my school only allows students to begin taking them during junior year, and I was only able to start with 2 because almost all of the others require pre-requisites in my school, that I fulfilled by my senior year to be able to take more. My high-school profile should make this clear when my application is being reviewed.
You should definitely include your softball and writing activities in your application, especially if you do not have other sports or writing ECs listed. If they won't fit in the space provided on the Common App, consider sending a resume. This is not the time to be modest!
I don't think that being first generation really qualifies as a hook. It might be more what we would call a "tip." It certainly doesn't hurt.
Another thing to consider: get an additional recommendation--that is, beyond 2 teachers and the GC--from someone who knows you well from your volunteer activities or another non-academic EC.