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ED Chances at Amhoist

zspot9zspot9 Registered User Posts: 353 Member
edited September 2006 in Amherst College
Caucasian male
Go to top-tier prep school in Florida (20-25 out of approx 200 per year to Ivies); does not rank
SAT: 750 M, 750 V, 800 Wr (taken twice, but received this score all in my second sitting)
ACT: 35 (1 sitting)
SATII: 760 MathII, 730 Chem, 700 Lit
AP scores: Chem 5, CalcAB 5, Eng. Lang 5, Micro 5

Freshman:
Geometry H - B+
World Civ. - B+
Bio. H - B+
English H - B+
French H - B+

Sophomore:
Precalculus H - A-
English II H - A-
Chemistry H - A-
US History H - B
French II H - B+

Junior:
English Lang. AP - A
Calculus AB AP - A-
Chemistry AP - B+
Microeconomics AP - B+
French IV H - A-

Senior:
Calculus BC AP
English Lit. AP
Macroeconomics AP
Physics C AP
French Lang. AP
Journalism (virtual course, first year being offered)

ECs:
Varsity soccer (9-12), captain senior year
Varsity volleyball (11-12)
Club soccer (9-12), about 8 hours/week
Hollywood Recreation Advisory Board - was elected by a city commission as one of three youth members of the board which determines how to spend the city's recreation budget on facilities and programs (11-12)
Debate (9, 12)
School paper (11-12)

Awards: National merit semifinalist, Beta Club Member, Honor Roll, French Honors Society, AP Scholar with honor

Recs: My two favorite teachers happen to be the two best rec. writers at my school; supposedly, they write sparkling recs.
Essay: English is my fort
Post edited by zspot9 on

Replies to: ED Chances at Amhoist

  • ejr1ejr1 Registered User Posts: 1,128 Senior Member
    No one can say anything for sure. There are kids with your stats and better there right now. Elite admissions are a crapshoot. There are no interviews, so the essays are truly critical. Do your best on them and make sure your personality comes through. Good luck!
  • DeanchhswDeanchhsw Registered User Posts: 71 Junior Member
    I think your credentials are very good.
    as ejr pointed out admission to elite schools are "crapshoot"
    given that you satisfy the basic academic "requirements."

    You'll have a decent chance, especially with a relatively strong SAT scores.
    Also like the athletic EC in captain of the soccer team. Write a strong essay
    (that's what they all say, but this isn't always easy) and you have a good chance.
  • interesteddadinteresteddad Registered User Posts: 24,177 Senior Member
    So what do you think my chances are ED at Amherst?

    A lot better if you contact the soccer coach and try to get recruited! I'd work the soccer angle hard because it's the thing that could make you stand out.

    Test scores are obviously fine. That's what they expect from white prep school kids. Won't help. Won't hurt.

    Can't tell for sure about your transcript. You've obviously taken the toughest courses. So that's fine. You say that about 10% of the class gets into schools that play Ivy League football. Are you in the top 10%? Close? Where have students with your class rank (yeah I know, they don't rank, but the guidance office knows) been accepted in recent years? I'd be all over the GC to get a feel for that.

    You are certainly a plausible candidate. It'll all come down to how much they value the soccer.

    BTW, I'd consider highlighting that City Commission Recreation Board by devoting one of your essays or short answers to something interesting about the experience. If you can bring that to life in a way that shows some reflection, it would be a plus.
  • zspot9zspot9 Registered User Posts: 353 Member
    I never said anything about Ivy league football...
    Last year I think we sent a couple to Yale, a few to Harvard, around 5 to Columbia, 5 to Penn, one or two to Princeton, and one or two to the other Ivies. I really don't know where I rank in my class, but I don't think anybody else is applying to Amherst, and I would be very surprised if I was not the only student from my school applying to Amherst ED. Nobody seems to know about it.
  • LemonjelloLemonjello Registered User Posts: 453 Member
    idad was just commenting on how the ivy league is an athletic conference, nothing more. I agree with what has been said about your chances. Good luck.
  • interesteddadinteresteddad Registered User Posts: 24,177 Senior Member
    Zspot9:

    The key piece of info you want to press your GC about is whether or not students with your GPA at your prep school (i.e. your class rank) have been getting into schools like Dartmouth, Penn, Duke, Brown, Amherst, Williams, Swarthmore, Pomona. These are all schools that are roughly comparable admissions-wise to Amherst, although some tend to favor one type of student, others another type.

    Finding out where kids with your GPA at your prep school have been getting accepted over the last several years will go a long way towards understanding your chances.

    At a school the size of Amherst, it is also possible to "work" your application. Visit for an overnight. Meet with coaches. Sit in on a couple of classes. Talk with professors. Learn everything you can. Think about how your interests make you and Amherst a particularly good fit beyond the obvious that Amherst is a top liberal arts college and you are a top student. What is unique that puts Amherst over the other top among liberal arts colleges for you?

    The adcoms will know every ED applicant by name at a school like Amherst. They'll know which ones have shown initiative and enthusiasm for the school. Plus, the ones that have usually prepare a better application.
  • Lrich01Lrich01 Registered User Posts: 25 New Member
    Hey, what do you think my chances for ED are? I am in love with Amherst and I am definitely applying ED.
    SAT: Math-700, English- 660, Writing- 650
    I am taking the ACT tommorow and I am enrolled in a princton review course to help get my score to a 33.

    GPA- 3.91 unweighted
    Freshman Year
    Adv English- A
    AP Human Geo- A
    Adv Latin- A
    Journalism- A
    Adv Geometry- B for one semester, A for another
    Health/P.E.- A
    Integrated Science- B for one semester, A for another

    10th Grade
    AP World History- B for both semesters
    Adv English- A
    Adv Latin 2- A
    Adv Algebra 2- A
    Computer Apps- A
    Oral Comm/Debate- A
    Adv Biology- A
    Apparel Management 2- A

    11th Grade
    AP Us History- A
    AP Psych- A
    Greatbooks- A
    AP English Lang- A
    Adv Latin 3- A
    Adv Precal- A
    Adv Chem- A
    Accounting- A

    12th Grade
    AP Calc AB
    AP Englsih Lit
    Adv Art History
    AP Us Gov't
    Ap Stats
    AP Latin Vergil
    AP Environ. Science

    AP Scores: Human Geo-4, World Civ-4, US History-4, Psych-5, English lang-4

    EC
    treasurer of Executive council(11, 12)
    Varsity letter in Golf (12)
    Walden Theatre(6-11)
    Mock Trial Team(10-12, wasn't offered when I was a 9th grader)(team won regionals, I won best witness at state)
    NHS(11, 12)
    Beta Club (10-12)
    Principle's Forum (10, only allowed to be on it for a year)
    Debate Team (9th only, should I even put that on my app?)
    Volunteer for many organizations regurally
    Summer job and an internship at a local counseling center

    Recs
    At Amherst a counselor's rec is required and mine loves me. I aid for her and she said that if she ever had a daughter she would want her to be just like me. My two teacher recs are from teachers who have taught me for 2 and 4 years.

    My school is a very big public school(1900 students) and it is ranked number one in the state. We don't have class rank or weighted GPA but I am in the top 10% of my class.

    I have visited Amherst and written a letter and emailed my admissions officer.
    I know it is a crapshoot but can anyone try and tell me what my chances are. For instance, do you think I have less than a 25% chance of getting in ED? Please help me.
  • DeanchhswDeanchhsw Registered User Posts: 71 Junior Member
    It's important to know your ethnicity and where you live, and also your socioeconomic standing before I could give an overall comment on this. Are you a URM? then your credentials are solid.

    But anyway, let's see what you got.

    SAT/ACT: A tad bit low for Amherst. Barely cracks the low 25% mark for English and Writing, Math is OK. There are many applicants who get in with their SATs in the 2000 range, but other credentials have to back this up, which you don't have in particular. I think the strength your application at this stage comes down to whether you get that 33 on the ACT.

    GPA/Rank: Solid. Obviously the strength of curriculum is laudable. No faults here. a couple Bs usually don't hurt you, don't worry about them.

    EC: nothing too special. It does show you that you're invovled, but there really isn't a strong concentration in a single area. Obviously at this stage there is little you can do to boost this up, so test scores mean a lot right now. This won't be a red light or anything, but it won't score you additional points.

    Recs: whatever you say I have to believe. Everyone's recs tend to be "stellar"-- this really doesn't mean much in comparison to other applicants.

    You are overall a pretty average applicant. Boost that ACT up to 33 and then you can comfortably say that there is "no way of knowing whether I get in or not." Right now, discounting your essay(which is a huge factor, mind you), I will say that your chance at ED is lower than 25 percent. There's nothing too eye-catching, yet the SAT score is a bit low. Again, I think the life of your application depends on how much you raise the test scores before you submit your application.

    If you're a black female from, say, Alabama, then things would be different ;)
  • Lrich01Lrich01 Registered User Posts: 25 New Member
    Since you asked, I am a white female from Kentucky. And my socioeconomic level is low for Amherst, I guess. I checked on their website and they said that they would charge me a little less than 20,000 a year. I hope that tells you what you wanted.
  • ejr1ejr1 Registered User Posts: 1,128 Senior Member
    Kentucky may be a plus for diveristy. White female is a drawback. Socioeconomic is average, since now over 50% receive some form of FA. Get those test scores up and your chances will imporve dramatically. It all depends on what they need to fill out the class next year, and your essays, as are everyone's, are critical. Good luck!
  • interesteddadinteresteddad Registered User Posts: 24,177 Senior Member
    Lrich:

    On the plus side, your academic transcript is excellent and your high school sends quite a few kids to top colleges. So, that's solid. The only minor ding you might get is no Physics. But, you look solid -- even more so if you nearer the top of the top 10%.

    Your test scores are definitely on the low side for Amherst. Enough that you'll probably end up getting an academic rating that is borderline for unhooked applicants at Amherst.

    I'm trying to figure out what you should hang your hat on as far as ECs. The mock trial stuff looks promising. I think you should also think about the summer internships/job at a counseling center. That's something that could possibly let you stand out from the pack. Give some thought about essay topics to reinforce one or more of your ECs so they can picture some kind of clear identity that is different and interesting relative to the rest of the apps in pile. If you can really bring something to life, it will help.

    Overall, I'm pretty much in agreement with Dean. I'd put the odds of ED acceptance somewhere in the 25% to 50% range. It's a reach because I'm just not sure they'll see an EC that knocks 'em out enough to overcome the test scores and bump you from the "consideration" pile to the "accept" pile. I think you have to be realistic -- that there's a good chance you won't get in. So take that into consideration as you flesh out your list of colleges. Don't let the ED app distract you from the big picture.
  • Lrich01Lrich01 Registered User Posts: 25 New Member
    Does anyone else have anymore advice?
This discussion has been closed.