I've been reading through these forums for months now, smiling, laughing, even giggling every once in a while. All the while thinking "wow, it must majorly suck having to apply to colleges." Well, my time has come, and, yes, it does suck.
Sorry to post a "chances" directly into the Vassar forum, but I really wanna get the skinny directly from people at the college, and people who have just recently got in. So, I ask you to, for my sake, bare with this thread pollution.
Here it is:
I plan on taking the Lit satii in the fall, so that I don't have to submit that US score.
In New York, everyone is required to take these silly tests called Regents. I've scored a perfect score on almost all of them, and 95+'s on the rest.
I go to a very competitive (rich) public High School on Long Island.
u/w: 3.1 w: 3.2
APs (taken four so far, taking four more next year)
English Language: 5
European history: 4
US history: 3
Like most other people, I have quite a few extra curriculars, but I'll spare you having to read them by posting just a few of my personal favorites.
Drama: I've been in a total of 4 plays (1 was a musical) in my High School career, a lead in all of them.
STAC: Student Television Arts Company. A program started about 30 years ago that is unique to my school. It's an audition-only multidisciplinary arts class that has taken up a great amount of my time and passion. Got in for Writing.
Was on the ping-pong team for two years. Never managed to win anything, but I had a helluva great time.
Code. I have a few websites, all coded by me in CSS. I've "dabbled" (if even that) a little in C.
Volunteering. (~500 hours total)
This is where I've devoted an incredible amount of my passion the last year. This is what I feel should be one of the most important things when applying to colleges and jobs, if for no other reason than to make this crazy mixed up country a little less crazy and mixed up.
Missionaries of Charity, Kolkotta, India (summer '07): 1 month
Habitat for Humanity, New Orleans (summer '06): 3 weeks
Interned at the regional Peace Corps recruiting office: 2 weeks
If all goes according to plan, my essay will be the brightest part on my mucky, dusty little resume (me hopes to be an english major!)
Oh, and I can yoyo really well, and I can solve a Rubik's cube in 37 seconds (current best time).
Also, I'm male and Indian (sadly, not the Native American kind).
Hm. That ended up being a little longer than I was hoping it would be. Sorry 'bout that.
Thanks and be as brutal as you would. I really can't determine if I have any shot at Vassar, and I'm thinkin' 'bout EDing.
The thing I'm really worried about is how poor my grades have been. The whole "95% of the incoming undergrads were in the top 20% of their graduating high school class" stuff really kills me. What does one have to do to be in that other 5%?
I say go for it but I would also agree that your grades are lower than one would like to see in a Vassar applicant. What sort of major are you interested in?
As a caution. My son's GPA was 3.67 weighted 3.51 unweighted, only one weighted Math/Science. that was top 21% at his school. Junior AP History 5 and English 4 (too AP Lit and AP Comp Gov Senior year). SAT 1360/2070. He was deferered ED and rejected Regular Decision at Vassar in 2006. Your URM status and extra-curriculars are more impressive (he did Theater but not leads and was debate captain for two years) but I think Vassar is serious when they say they are looking for at least a 3.7 unweighted. He was rejected at Vassar and Oberlin. Accepted at Bates, Bard, Hampshire, American University, Franklin and Marshall, and Connecticut College. He also seriously considered Drew and Brandeis for a Boston school. You might consider some of those as alternatives where they have fewer Indian applicants than Vassar.
Good luck. Try to think of a good way to package yourself in your essays. Tell a consistent story about your "brand" for Vassar.
P.S. he went to Bates and transferred to Bard this year. My D just started at Vassar a few days ago and loves it so far.
Last edited by ctParent2006; 08-27-2007 at 08:42 PM.
On most of the statistical databases, number/grade lists, etc. on the web, there's always that 3-8% of kids whose GPA are the same as mine who get into these great schools. What do I have to do to be one of those guys? I.E. what did they have that I don't have now?
Oh, and I plan on majoring in English. Perhaps also double majoring in Political Sciences.
Lots of English majors at Vassar but I don't think Political Science is one of their most popular. That might help a bit.
Just write the best essays you can, take a tough Senior schedule and do as best you can in the first Quarter for the ED app and first Semester for the RD app. Get the best recommendations you can and....make sure you apply to a good spread of reach, match and safety schools. My two kids had a good spread but didn't get into any of their reach schools (well maybe Bates for my son but his mother went there so that may have helped). My Daughter was rejected at her top five choices but is very happy with Vassar which might actually have been higher than 6 on her list. This has me skeptical that schools look outside the numbers very much when it comes to applicants from wealthy areas...something I agree with but it still was a bit of a surprise.
Compare your stats to past applicants from your High School, your guidance department should have that info, to see where students with similar records have gotten in.
Hey, I'm a freshman at Vassar, and I think you have a good chance. Your GPA isn't the greatest, but it isn't bad either. Keep in mind that the college process is a TOTAL crapshoot though: I know people who were ranked far higher than me (I was ranked 50th) who got rejected from Vassar. It depends on so many things that it really is impossible to predict. Your SAT scores are great -- but again, it depends on a ton of different things. Good luck
God. All right. I visited the school two days ago (along with amherst, dartmouth, and Wesleyan), and I think I've decided. Vassar is the school for me. All the students were smiling, the classes were small, the professors were involved, there were trees that looked like they were pointing the wrong way, and there were PINK BIKES!
I think EDing, at this point, is a definite. I spoke to someone in admissions while I was at Vassar about my grades, and what she said was to tell the admissions office WHY my grades were so low in the "Your Space" section of the application.
I'll have to work really hard, but hopefully it'll prove worthwhile in the end.
Thank you all for your help. Oh, and if anyone else has any other advice/ any other "chances" ideas, I'd love to hear what you have to say.
Yeah, the pink bikes are pretty much amazing.
Anyway, try to be specific about what exactly attracts you to Vassar. Everyone will say that it's a gorgeous campus with small classes, blah blah. I guess you can include that, but remember that those things apply to virtually every liberal arts school -although Vassar is the most gorgeous of them all, obviously What made you want to choose it over Amherst and Dartmouth? Be genuine and show your love for the school, explain your grades, and definitely talk a lot about your international and local volunteering work - it looks really impressive. I have a feeling that Vassar really likes students who have a social conscience.
All right, so here's the skinny: I've decided that I am definitely going to ED to vassar.
I realize how frustratingly senior-typic I'm being, but Vassar's really got ma kit in the caboodle (I almost definitely used that idiom wrong. sorry) and I want to make sure my chances are as high as possible.
I should find out if I'm a national merit semi/commended student this week.
I plan on taking the SATii for Lit.
My recommendation letter will be killer (from a teacher with whom I've spent three periods everyday for the last three years).
Hoping to pull the GPA a few tiny fractions.
Essay's looking pretty good, as is my YourSpace essay (explaining my bad grades).
So, this'll be my final bump. I just want a few final impressions. Stuff like "Don't kid yourself, slugger" or "Man, if you couldn't get into this school, there's no hope for anyone else" or "I'm actually a Vassar Admissions agent, here's my number, I think we can work something out." SPEW honesty. My guidance councilor isn't giving me a clear impression of my chances. I'm really not sure if I have no chance, or some chance.
I think you need to explain in the "my space" or on your essay why your GPA is so low compared to your test scores. Unfortunately that is viewed as the "kiss of death" because the tests indicate intellectual ability and the GPA indicates under achievement. The question is why? Think about "why" and try to explain it but I also say go for it ED1 if you really love Vassar.