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VANDY!!! Is being "first-generation American" an advantage in the college admissions process?

FijibluFijiblu Registered User Posts: 46 Junior Member
I am looking to apply ED to Vanderbilt this upcoming fall (class of 2017)
In my opinion, my grades / GPA are well above average. I have great ECs, a job and volunteer experience. My ACT (31) is on the lower side for Vandy (but I'm hoping to raise it - I still have a while to do so). Aside from this, would it at all be beneficial to my chances that I am first-generation American? Both my parents were born in Russia and immigrated here. My first language was Russian, and I am still fluent in Russian today. Could this "help" me get in?

Replies to: VANDY!!! Is being "first-generation American" an advantage in the college admissions process?

  • goldenbear2020goldenbear2020 Registered User Posts: 908 Member
    No, "first-generation American" status doesn't confer an admissions advantage...if it did, you'd see a lot more Asian students at top schools.
  • alooknacalooknac Registered User Posts: 1,296 Senior Member
    @Fijiblu "first generation" status refers to first generation of a family to attend college rather than first generation American. However, your background could "help" as it is a somewhat unique quality, just as being fluent in a second language can be a trait that the admissions people view favorably.
  • FijibluFijiblu Registered User Posts: 46 Junior Member
  • AlundariAlundari Registered User Posts: 111 Junior Member
    It's hard to have "well above average" grades at a school where 92% of kids are in the top 10%. If your parents haven't attended college it might give you a small (although not as much as URM, Legacy, or Athlete) leg up on admissions. If they have, well you can still use the immigration thing to spice up an essay of yours.
  • T26E4T26E4 Registered User Posts: 24,274 Senior Member
    edited February 2016
    Not sure what @goldenbear2020 is referring to. Holistic admissions will view any applicant in the context of his/her upbringing and school. Students whose parents haven't attended college may imply less educational support at home.

    Also not sure about the 1st gen status equating to Asian American students. I'd say most Asian American HS top applicants come from families where one or both parents are recent immigrants themselves, here working in professional jobs -- at least that's my experience. Some Asian populations (SE Asia, pacific islanders, etc) tend toward less parental college. But there's no shortage of 2nd generation and beyond South Asians, Chinese, Koreans, Japanese. Certainly 1st gen kids of these backgrounds exist (I was one), but they seem to me at least, fewer in number
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