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Applying to an abundance of colleges, What's the benefit?

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Replies to: Applying to an abundance of colleges, What's the benefit?

  • SarripSarrip 709 replies25 threads Member
    I also wondered if there was a fear factor involved since the competitiveness is so fierce at this point people are over applying. We have heard the stories about the perfect SAT scorers not getting into to top colleges etc. I remember when DS14 was applying to colleges he didn't have a dream school. we chose colleges that we could afford to send him to. During the application process a teacher asked him why he was not applying to any Ivy League schools and that she was not giving him a recommendation if he didn't. When he came home and told me what she said I was a little upset because we knew what we could afford but added 2 to the application. One he ended up attending and the other he was waitlisted. So this kid who never even thought about attending an Ivy went to one. Yet there were others in his class who simply could not go on because they dreamed of going to a certain school since they were 6 and did not get admitted. You just never know.
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  • massmom2018massmom2018 84 replies11 threads Junior Member
    edited May 2019
    My son in 2018 applied to 10. Got into 4 rejected at 4 waitlisted at two. I met a student from a higher socioeconomic town than ours and the advice from her school was 10 to 15. Ours still recommends 8. I have two more kids and will likely stick with around ten. It is a lot of work to apply to colleges with supplemental essays. I think it depends how many reaches you have because it is really difficult to predict admissions to reach schools.
    edited May 2019
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  • mamaedefamiliamamaedefamilia 3740 replies24 threads Senior Member
    My D17's school recommended 6-8; she applied to 9 because we were seeking merit scholarships. Got into all 9, with merit awards at 8. Only one of those schools was a high reach for admission, and six were reaches for merit.

    However, the admissions landscape looks increasingly competitive just two years later, no matter how high one's stats. Even so, we will try to limit my D21 to a judiciously chosen ten when the time comes. As mentioned above, the supplemental essays can be very time consuming.
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  • suzyQ7suzyQ7 4867 replies66 threads Senior Member
    edited May 2019
    6-8 optimal, max 10. (Excluding kids applying to UCs which can hit that number with 1 app).

    Quality over quantity- If there are supplemental apps, they have to be great! No way they can be all great and authentic if you have to do more than 10-12.

    Having a match or safety EA is wonderful... But many schools are getting rid of EA in favor of more EDs (looking at you BC)
    edited May 2019
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  • milgymfammilgymfam 1552 replies28 threads Senior Member
    edited May 2019
    My daughter’s scholarship advisor told her that they prefer students apply to between 9-12, with an even mix of safety, match, and reach schools. They then determined that all but two on my daughter’s school list were reaches, so they asked her to add more schools. She ended up with a list of fifteen schools. She also ended up accepted into her ED school so the rest of the apps were kind of all wasted, but they really didn’t think she had a shot.. so I guess I wouldn’t feel they were wasted if she had needed them.
    edited May 2019
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  • SarripSarrip 709 replies25 threads Member
    @milgymfam, that sounds pretty close to the advice that we received from a consultant. We now have a list of 13 schools and have visited all but 1 and to tell the truth she said that she can be happy at any of them but 1 has really caught her eye more than the others. I'm sending her to NY where my son resides during the summer to see the last one with him, I trust his judgement.
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  • itsgettingreal17itsgettingreal17 4110 replies28 threads Senior Member
    50+ is excessive. But 8 can be too limiting for many. My D applied to 17 because she was looking for a competitive full ride (extremely low odds for almost all of them). It was a good number for her strategy.
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  • whidbeyite2002whidbeyite2002 271 replies1 threads Junior Member
    edited May 2019
    I believed 6-8 applications was a good number, but my daughter chose to apply to 11 after eliminating 3 colleges and adding 1. This decision did work for her in that she was accepted to one of her top choices (a high reach school), and another extremely selective college. Interestingly, she was waitlisted at what we thought would be a safety school based on her stats, and she (and all the other 4.0 UW students in her year) were not accepted to the flagship state university’s honors program. The application and decision process was definitely a learning experience. That said, I believe she chose the correct number of schools for her. It all worked out very well in the end with a good number of acceptances and waitlists.
    edited May 2019
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  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 30391 replies59 threads Senior Member
    Yes, applying to more colleges can improve the outcome. However, it is not as direct or sure of a relationship as statistics may show. It is difficult to put the same amount of interest and accuracy into an application or s school, and some schools do have holistic application appraisal processes.

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  • suzyQ7suzyQ7 4867 replies66 threads Senior Member
    It makes sense to wait to push the button on RD schools for the EA results. We slashed a few potentials after a great EA acceptance.
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  • International DadInternational Dad 344 replies10 threads Member
    edited May 2019
    For international students with financial need, how many applications do you think is a good number?
    edited May 2019
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  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 30391 replies59 threads Senior Member
    edited May 2019
    There is no magic number. However, international students who need money need to pick their schools carefully. You have the schools with the most money and best policies, but they are also the most competitive schools so that even getting in is a lottery ticket.

    IMO, just off the top of my head, i would start doing extensive research on all of the schools you’ve never heard of, the unknown schools, the ones where the student would be in the very top of the class. The key is to find out if any of those schools have money available for international students. Do they give financial aid to internationals? Do they have merit awards that are enough? Would it even be feasible to afford those schools? I would then do enough research to get to know the schools and programs that are possibilities and write each such school a personal letter explaining why (other than the financial aspect) youbwould wsbt to go there. I would pick 10- 15 of such schools. This is the true work, by the way of picking colleges.

    The next step is easy and what everyone loves to do. There are only s few schools in this country that guarantee to meet international students’ Need. Also very few that give a lot of aid that accept international students on a need blind basis. The most selective schools do tend to have the most money and latitude that way.
    I would apply to about 10 of those highly selective schools that have the money both or either, merit and need. Just make sure you even have a chance at the money. You are wasting time and your resources applying to schools that have nothing in the way of funds for international students, and this is the case with these schools as much as they are with the lesser known ones. You have to check. Things change . So you have to personally check each school.

    For many international students, part 1 of the above methodology is just ignored because the only reason they want to go to school in this country is if they can get into the known schools, selective schools. That’s easier to do in terms of putting together a list, but bear in mind that the competition is fierce because that’s what a lot of people do.

    edited May 2019
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  • SarripSarrip 709 replies25 threads Member
    @International Dad , More people would see your post and you would probably get more responses if you created a separate post.
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  • ASKMotherASKMother 240 replies1 threads Junior Member
    @International Dad according to a Forbes article written last year in July, only 5 US colleges are full need-blind for all students including their international admits: Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Amherst and MIT. The article gave honorable mention to Cornell and Georgetown, which have money to offer but limited.

    Another article from USNWR in October had a slightly difference result and listed a Top 10 in giving aid and also the national rank of the school... they seem to go hand in hand - top schools have more money to spread around.
    https://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/the-short-list-college/articles/universities-that-offer-international-students-the-most-financial-aid

    However if your students is strong but maybe not top 1% (ie above average but not quite HPY material) you might be better off trying to compete for merit aid at less selective schools. And in that regard you might need to apply to 10-15 schools because merit aid is getting harder and harder to 'win'. Just make certain international students are eligible for those merit scholarships before applying, maybe email their Admissions or FinAid prior to paying for the application fee. Good luck!
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  • HarrietMWelschHarrietMWelsch 2662 replies34 threads Senior Member
    Just watching/saying hi from the perspective of another parent of an 06, 09, and now 2020.
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  • SarripSarrip 709 replies25 threads Member
    edited May 2019
    @HarrietMWelsch, Hi, how about that!!! I have a 06, 09 and now a 2020 as well. I'm gonna pray for you :smiley: and you pray for me :smiley: .
    edited May 2019
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  • International DadInternational Dad 344 replies10 threads Member
    edited May 2019
    @cptofthehouse @Sarrip @ASKMother
    Thanks for your suggestions, I made the list for my daughter based on the different articles I found, and thanks to the great help I received here at CC, I know that for internationals, there are no Safeties, but the list includes universities with Different acceptance rates, some offer merit and / or full need aid. I came to have a very long list which I managed to debug almost in half according to location or other factors that my daughter does not like so much. We have a lot of time to apply, she is finishing 9 grade.

    I started her list as a hobby, and she doesn’t know all the colleges neither details, because I don’t want to push her or stress her so early.
    She have good grades, is 4/325, varsity sports, and other extracurriculars, but we need to wait SAT scores, etc, to see if their works for all Colleges on the list. Probably in one year, we can review college by College and take out some. For now we have 27 College to apply.
    edited May 2019
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  • HarrietMWelschHarrietMWelsch 2662 replies34 threads Senior Member
    @sarrip, it's a deal. :smile: It's really fun to have the input from the older two, don't you think?
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  • SarripSarrip 709 replies25 threads Member
    @HarrietMWelsch, I agree. Sometimes I wonder how I would have made it through having a midlife baby without them. Despite the age difference, they are so close and she respects their opinion so much more than mine (even if they are saying the same thing I just said). It also helps me with my ancient thinking.
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