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How many reach schools should I apply?

happysunnyshinehappysunnyshine Registered User Posts: 1,202 Member
edited March 2010 in College Admissions
Just read through the "regret" thread and one mentioned that he/she did not apply to enough reaches. So how many is reasonable?
Post edited by happysunnyshine on

Replies to: How many reach schools should I apply?

  • bravestfeverbravestfever Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    I regret only applying to one reach school, although it is not much of a reach at all. I wish I would've applied to 3 or 4, because you never know if one of them will accept you.

    Pick a few schools you dream of going to and apply. You have nothing to lose, except the application fee :)
  • Collegestress16Collegestress16 Registered User Posts: 1,162 Senior Member
    Just apply to schools you want to attend, but always include matches and safeties. Apply to a reach if you would attend, but don't apply for the sake of applying. I applied to a lot of reaches just like Handala92.
  • motion12345motion12345 Registered User Posts: 1,584 Senior Member
    I applied to 1 safety, 3 matches, and 5 reach schools.
  • limabeanslimabeans Registered User Posts: 4,754 Senior Member
    Does applying more schools increase your chances?


    This thread started in the parent's forum:
  • PutturaniPutturani Registered User Posts: 1,097 Senior Member
    My school only allows us to apply to eight school and they recommend 2:3:3 but I want to change it to 3:3:2. I wish we could apply to more reaches though.
  • glassesarechicglassesarechic Registered User Posts: 5,487 Senior Member
    If your safety is truly safe, you only need one. Otherwise, it's up to you. I'd say 4 matches and 4-6 reaches if you're a competitive applicant aiming for the tippy-top-most tier of schools.
  • applicannotapplicannot Registered User Posts: 4,366 Senior Member
    It depends what you need. If you're playing the need-based aid game, you'll probably be a little top heavy. If you're playing the merit-based aid game, you're going to be bottom heavy. If cost isn't a major factor, it's going to be different.
  • happysunnyshinehappysunnyshine Registered User Posts: 1,202 Member
    My opinions (may be biased and are definitely subject to change)
    Princeton: I can't help linking 'hierarchy' with eating clubs in Princeton and I don't really feel comfortable. I've read posts saying how awesome princeton is but I am still a little skeptical. And I read that Princeton is cutting budgets and it is not a good thing for someone in desperate need of FA.
    Columbia: Perilous Power makes feel that NYC is indeed a dangerous place where I need to be afraid of bombs all the time. I am probably paranoiac.
    UChicago: I like UChicago because of Hayek; but I doubt I will go if I do not receive sufficient aid (I feel that UChicago rarely gives out sufficient aid for internationals?). FA is such a big problem. But I will apply and cross my fingers.
    UPenn & Cornell: I've heard that there are a lot of 'mandatory' parties & drinking and I don't really like this kind of environment. There are lots of smokers, too.
    Brown & Dartmouth: basically FA problem; they have very small budgets.
    Stanford: I've heard that people there are quite cold... Drastic contrast considering the brightness of the sun in California.
    MIT: I am not a committed math- or science-oriented person so I don't know if it suits me (any opinions?)

    Please correct me if I have any misconceptions (probably have a lot since I haven't had and will not have the opportunities to visit the campuses). Any additional comments/suggestions would be greatly greatly appreciated.
  • happysunnyshinehappysunnyshine Registered User Posts: 1,202 Member
    Cost is definitely a problem.
  • gapyearstudentgapyearstudent Registered User Posts: 1,679 Senior Member
    And I read that Princeton is cutting budgets and it is not a good thing for someone in desperate need of FA.

    Princeton has one of the most generous FA programs in the country, I believe it rivals H & Y. A lot of schools have recently cut budgets, but that doesn't mean they're cutting FA. Many elite schools don't like to cut FA.
    (I feel that UChicago rarely gives out sufficient aid for internationals?)

    If I remember correctly, you are right. You get put in a very competitive pool if you're an int'l applying for aid.
    Brown & Dartmouth: basically FA problem; they have very small budgets.

    Like I said, if you're comparing to HYP, true. Otherwise, nope. Their FA is pretty good, I believe. Dartmouth has a FA calculator for US citizens on its website but you can try it out.
    I've heard that people there are quite cold... Drastic contrast considering the brightness of the sun in California.

    Haha. Are you comparing Stanford's weather to MIT/Princeton/Chicago?
  • BeautifulnightsBeautifulnights Registered User Posts: 648 Member
    As many as your parents will pay the app fees for!
  • gapyearstudentgapyearstudent Registered User Posts: 1,679 Senior Member
    I just realized you were talking about people, not weather in relation to Stanford.. my bad.
  • MillancadMillancad Registered User Posts: 5,941 Senior Member
    I think most of the schools I applied to were reaches. In America, I only did Harvard, Yale, MIT, UChicago, Georgetown, Swarthmore, and Dartmouth. At least the first three are definitely reaches.
    I actually decided not to apply to my safety, OSU, before I had any acceptances in America. OSU has a special deadline of Dec 1 for scholarship consideration, and I let the deadline pass when I had only been accepted to schools all the way in England where I probably, in retrospect, would have been unhappy anyway. Of course, if my EA results from MIT, UChicago, and Gtown had been bad I could have applied to UMich (which I had already visited), along with other schools, with plenty of time, and everyone I know always gets in. And, of course, my guidance counselor thought I would certainly get into UChicago. But it probably wasn't the best decision to make.

    Choose your number of reaches based off of your stats. If you're in the range of schools that are "reaches for everyone" (HYPMS) you should have quite a few reaches, perhaps equal to or greater in number than your matches. Your number of matches should be about 75% of your reaches. And I really think you should have two safeties. A lot of people on CC just have one, which usually means they just applied to the flagship state, or a local public if the flagship is too selective. I think having two forces you to actually consider your safety schools.

    But I totally didn't do that. /hypocrisy
  • Skywalker23Skywalker23 Registered User Posts: 901 Member
    I did:
    8 reaches (planned 6 but added 2 in december)
    5 matches
    1 safety

    most would say that I had too many reaches though, and too many schools overall.
This discussion has been closed.