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Do Not Apply to These (Top 10) Universities

sometransfersometransfer Posts: 126Registered User Junior Member
edited December 2012 in Transfer Students
I have been seeing a lot of threads about people wanting to transfer into a top 15/20 college. The truth is everyone (more 95% of all people) who applies to the following universities is wasting their money.

DO NOT APPLY: Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Chicago, Duke, Dartmouth.

ALL of these colleges accept less than 5% of their transfer students or less. Meaning more than 19 out of 20 applicants get rejected. Princeton accepts none. Getting into Harvard as a freshman is easier than getting in as a transfer to the above schools. You can also bet athletic transfers make up a high percentage of their incoming transfer pool. Throw away your money and suffer rejection at your own choice.

Perfect applicants will be rejected: Columbia, CalTech, WashU, Northwestern, MIT, Penn.

The above colleges accept transfers, but at a rate between 5 and 10%. A 4.0 college GPA is commonplace for people who apply. You would also need a very rigorous workload in your declared major to even stand a slight chance. All applicants who are trying to compensate for bad high school grades should avoid applying altogether. Again, think about the athletic transfers.

Ultra-competitive, yet possible: Johns Hopkins, Brown, Cornell, Georgetown, Carnegie Mellon.

Here is where I would say transferring starts to become a possibility instead of charity. Very strong applicants have some tangible chance of getting in, and paying the application fee might be worth the cost. Still, since the acceptance rate is between 10 and 15%, eight or nine out of ten people are getting rejected. Cornell says 21%, but then you account for the over 250 guaranteed transfers and the number begins to look more like 14%.

Many people are making threads about transferring into a high-ranked university without looking at the threads prior. Before you apply to any of the above schools, look at your grades and course load. They had better be above a 3.7 and of very challenging classes relating to your declared major, or else you're just tossing your money away. Freshmen, wait until you get your first semester grades before even considering transfer. Final exams can change everything.
Post edited by sometransfer on
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Replies to: Do Not Apply to These (Top 10) Universities

  • beachlover15beachlover15 Posts: 505Registered User Member
    Where are you getting your numbers from?
  • entomomentomom Posts: 23,658Registered User Senior Member
    sometransfer,

    I agree with some of what you say and having been on this forum for many years, I too tire of all the fr wanting to transfer up with unrealistic expectations.

    My main complaint with your post is the hyperbole: saying things like "DO NOT APPLY" and "Perfect applicants will be rejected" is at odds with a rational approach that considers both the applicant's qualities and the admission rates and stats of the school.
  • beachlover15beachlover15 Posts: 505Registered User Member
    I would change DO NOT APPLY to "Apply with caution and low expectations".
  • SFcollege21SFcollege21 Posts: 11Registered User New Member
    Agree with beachlover15...I still think it's worth it to apply and is not completely hopeless if you're exceptionally qualified.
  • aaaa993aaaa993 Posts: 103Registered User Junior Member
    College Board provides transfer statistics on their website.
  • aunt beaaunt bea Posts: 2,230Registered User Senior Member
    I agree that people have unrealistic expectations about going to these schools. There are only so many spots and to expect a spot, is grasping at straws; especially these international students who not only expect to be easily admitted, but expect to be fully funded. Students can apply, but their idea of a dream school should expand beyond 1 school.
  • earlygrad123earlygrad123 Posts: 226Registered User Junior Member
    As a prospective transfer student...I can't help but feel completely disheartened and almost traumatized by this post.
    I mean, I agree with you. The chances of getting accepted into these schools is practically obsolete. But, I'm so confused.
    I don't even know where to apply now. All these schools have such fantastic programs to offer their students. I just need help on really evaluating my situation, and to be frank, my counselor isn't helping at all.
    someone...help?
  • CaillebotteCaillebotte Posts: 1,546Registered User Senior Member
    As a prospective transfer student...I can't help but feel completely disheartened and almost traumatized by this post.
    I mean, I agree with you. The chances of getting accepted into these schools is practically obsolete. But, I'm so confused.
    I don't even know where to apply now. All these schools have such fantastic programs to offer their students. I just need help on really evaluating my situation, and to be frank, my counselor isn't helping at all.
    someone...help?

    You don't know where to apply? What? Bro, there are more than 9 good universities in the nation. Just go to the flagship school in your state (particularly if you're a STEM major). All this CC stress isn't worth it. I'm saying this as someone who transferred into and graduated from Cornell. I'm in an engineering field and I frequently wish I had just gone to UIUC (a top-5 engineering school) and saved like $50k.
  • davidthefatdavidthefat Posts: 1,521Registered User Senior Member
    What if I am taking 300-400 level classes in my major (computer science) and a very related major (math)?
  • earlygrad123earlygrad123 Posts: 226Registered User Junior Member
    Well, I know where I want to apply. I guess what I meant was that this post sort of disheartened me a bit.
    Man, I know! I'm totally cool with any schools I get into at this point.
    Nah, I'm an anthro major!
  • ChadVeneChadVene Posts: 239Registered User Junior Member
    What are you, hurt about being rejected from those schools? Most people I've seen on this section of the forum are realistic about their prospects.

    In addition, I've seen people on CC being accepted to Harvard and Dartmouth as transfers, and I personally know someone who was accepted by Columbia last year. His stats were far from perfect!

    Transfers, if your goal is set upon a school, then by all means, apply.
  • sometransfersometransfer Posts: 126Registered User Junior Member
    There are exceptions to every rule. There are one out of ten or twenty people who should apply. The problem is people are overestimating their applications and underestimating the competitiveness of the applicant pool. People with lower grades have lower chances, unless they have found another way to earn acceptance (connections with admissions, very influential parents).

    For example, 38.8% of enrolled applicants to Dartmouth last spring had a 4.0 college GPA. In total over 70% (26 students) of them had over a 3.7. The 22.2% (4 people) accounts for most athletic transfers.

    The costs of applying are the application fee, the work put into the application, and the potential suffering of rejection. For most students, the chances are so low applying is the same as throwing your money away. Qualified applicants have confidence and are disregarding my advice because they have the statistics to back up their ambition. Some random person on College Confidential has little effect on their future plans. However, most students should avoid applying altogether. A lot of people here should stop dreaming and open their eyes.
  • beachlover15beachlover15 Posts: 505Registered User Member
    This thread really makes me not want to send in my apps to Vandy and Emory.
  • transfernkidtransfernkid Posts: 256Registered User Junior Member
    I agree with this post. Ivy leagues are hard to get into as it is. Transferring into one is very unlikely. Cornell is a great school to transfer in. I have a friend who went there and said the transfer rate is less demanding out of the Ivy's. It's better to pick a school that best weighs out your life goals not the name. This is from experience. :-)
  • sometransfersometransfer Posts: 126Registered User Junior Member
    The holidays bring a wave of eager transfer applicants... instead of me replying to every hopeful who wants to get into Columbia, read the first post for my thoughts and chances.

    The most important factor of all for academic transfer applicants is fulfilling pre-requisites for your intended major. Colleges are looking for as many ways to reject transfer applicants as possible, and the first way is degree requirements. Make sure you are where your applied college wants you to be, and you have all the weed-out courses needed. Afterward, look at your college GPA, how difficult your more advanced courses are, and how prestigious your current instution is before applying. Forget high school GPA.
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