Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community discussions, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

  • Reply to threads, and start your own.
  • Post reviews of your campus visits.
  • Find hundreds of pages of informative articles.
  • Search from over 3 million scholarships.
Please take a moment to read our updated TOS, Privacy Policy, and Forum Rules.

Preparation for Ivy League College

Drake_EraaDrake_Eraa Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
I am in 9th grade and i would love to go to an Ivy League College one day. I am more than ready to work hard for it. How am i supposed to start preparing... what should i do?

What do Ivy League Colleges look for? What kinds of sports and volunteer work do they look for.

Thank you very much for your help!

Replies to: Preparation for Ivy League College

  • happy1happy1 Registered User Posts: 18,471 Senior Member
    edited May 19
    It is way too early to think about specific colleges (especially the hyper-competitive ones). You don't even have one full year's GPA and you have no standardized testing. You also need to recognize that HS should be an experience in and of itself -- a time of learning and growth and not just a 4 year college application prep experience.

    It is good to take school seriously and know that college will be on your horizon, but it is too early to start planning for specific colleges. I would highly recommend that you get off of CC until your junior year.

    For now you should focus on:
    --Working hard, learning, and doing as well as you can in the most challenging curriculum you can manage.
    --When the time comes study for standardized tests.
    --Continue your involvement in activities you care about and work towards making meaningful contributions to those activities.
    --Enjoying spending time with your family and friends.

    When the time comes asses your academic stats (including GPA, standardized tests, course rigor) as well as your financial needs and apply to a wide range of reach, match, and safety schools that appear affordable (you will have to run a net price calculator for each school you consider) and that you would be happy to attend. Most Ivy schools have under a 10% acceptance rate. You need to expand your horizons and recognize that there are many wonderful schools out there where you can have a great 4 year experience and get where you want to go in life.
  • justdreamingjustdreaming Registered User Posts: 54 Junior Member
    Don't get your heart set on going to an Ivy league. There are plenty of other fantastic schools. In terms of advice, someone once told me something about top tier schools that I think makes a lot of sense. They aren't looking for well-rounded students, they're looking for a well-rounded class. Basically, they want students who are really good at a particular thing rather than students who are pretty good at a lot of things. Find your passionate and pursue it. Find extracurriculars/internships that demonstrate this interest. In addition to solid extracurriculars, you're going to need really good stats. In terms of grades, don't get too beat up if you don't have a 4.0 unweighted. Try as hard as you can and remember that GPAs mean different things for different high schools. Take as many APs and honors as you can (especially for subjects you really love). Colleges prefer kids who take harder classes even if that means you sacrifice your GPA a bit. Do try and stay in the top 5% of your class. As for SAT/ACT, try both and once you find one you like, take plenty of practice tests. The goal should be probably a 1520/33. Once you get above a 1550/34, don't bother to take any more tests, 1550 won't keep you out of any school. Don't stress too much about standardized testing though. Top schools will almost always take a person with lower scores and better extracurriculars over a person with a perfect score who did little outside of school. There are people with 1400s who get into Harvard. Test scores aren't everything.
    To sum it up, do what you love and don't stress too much about grades and test scores. You're only in high school once. Spend time with your family and friends because you'll miss them when you're at college.
  • LindagafLindagaf Registered User Posts: 6,997 Senior Member
  • Drake_EraaDrake_Eraa Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    can you recommend me some books to read that might help?
  • happy1happy1 Registered User Posts: 18,471 Senior Member
    Read books YOU are interested in, that fuel YOUR interests and YOUR passions. There is no set path for admission to top tier schools.
  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn Super Moderator Posts: 31,657 Super Moderator
    Three kids in my daughter's small HS class got into Ivy League schools. When I think of them, the word "enthusiastic" comes to mind. They just went full-tilt for the areas they were interested in. Took extra classes and also excelled in ECs - sports or music. I don't think any of these kids, in 9th grade, said, "Hmm, what path do I need to take to get into an Ivy League school?" They were too busy excelling to worry about it!
  • Drake_EraaDrake_Eraa Registered User Posts: 3 New Member
    yes i am doing that but are there any books you should read before attending an Ivy League College
  • skieuropeskieurope Super Moderator Posts: 27,730 Super Moderator
    are there any books you should read before attending an Ivy League College
  • LindagafLindagaf Registered User Posts: 6,997 Senior Member
    Not trying to sound horrid, but a kid destined for the Ivy League probably doesn't need to ask this question.
  • CU123CU123 Registered User Posts: 1,306 Senior Member
    edited May 21
    @Lindagaf I don't think so, this person sounds a lot like my daughter in 9th grade, albeit after visiting five Ivies and UChicago last summer she decided on UChicago as her first choice school where she'll start this Fall.....so no Ivy for her.
  • LindagafLindagaf Registered User Posts: 6,997 Senior Member
    @CU123 So your daughter asked what books she should read and got into Chicago? Let the OP know what books she read then. He/she can follow her example.
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 24,857 Senior Member
    edited May 21
    The book to read: The Fiske Guide to Colleges. Lol.

    And yes, the student needs to be well rounded. They don't want a bunch of unilateral kids, each going in hs own direction. That's another CC myth. Tippy tops can cherry pick kids with various accomplishments *and* a shown willingness to expand, try new things, develop new likes. Clinging to a "passion" doesn't trump adding some wise other choices.

    But no, I kinda agree with Lindagaf: the smart kids aren't asking about a formula. They're wiser, spend time trying to understand what the colleges say and show, then go from there.

    @CU123 remember: No "dream"schools. Dreams aren't what gets one in.

    And believe us, kids change A LOT by spring of jr year, then to fall of senior, then to December 31.
  • CU123CU123 Registered User Posts: 1,306 Senior Member
    @Lindagaf no, but as you said, you sound a little harsh on a 14 year old. Should someone have thought through all of this by the end of middle school??
  • LindagafLindagaf Registered User Posts: 6,997 Senior Member
    @CU123 I am a realist. There was nothing harsh in either post. This student is a rising sophomore and I already provided a useful link.
This discussion has been closed.