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What colleges should I apply to and will likely get into?

Carucatuc1Carucatuc1 Registered User Posts: 23 Junior Member
Demographics: Filipino/White Male

GPA: 4.0uw/4.525w (8 APs Taken/6 Taking)

Rank: 3/420

SAT: 1490

AP Exams: Physics 1 (5), Government (5), Chemistry (4), Computer Science (5), Seminar (5), English 11 (5), World History (5), Calculus AB (5)

Teacher Recs: Good Recs from my Physics and Math Teachers

1. Four Year Varsity Tennis (Captain Senior Year)
2. Local Tennis Assistant Coach (Taught kids ages 6-15 basic tennis techniques and skills)
3. Cultural Dance Choreographer (created, taught, and performed modernized Filipino Folk Dances at local events)
4. Engineering Internship at Naval Base
5. Board Member of Community Service Club (club raised over $10,000 to help conquer pediatric cancer)
6. Math Team President and Math Tutor
7. Science Fair (Won 1st place categorical awards in Regionals)
8. Part-Time Job at a Filipino Market
9. NHS Vice-president

Major that I'm interested in: Chemical Engineering

Replies to: What colleges should I apply to and will likely get into?

  • aquaptaquapt Registered User Posts: 1,628 Senior Member
    edited February 10
    Congrats on your hard work and strong record! You should have lots of good options.

    Much depends on what kind of school would be financial advantageous for you, and where you want to be geographically. What's your home state? Are you recruitable for tennis, and do you want to play in college? (If so, would you be looking at D1 or D3 schools?) Do you qualify for need-based financial aid? Or would you be seeking merit aid? Or is full-pay for a private U or expensive OOS public possible for your family?
  • momrathmomrath Registered User Posts: 5,927 Senior Member
    @Carucatuc, Are you an American citizen or permanent resident?
  • Carucatuc1Carucatuc1 Registered User Posts: 23 Junior Member
    American citizen
  • Carucatuc1Carucatuc1 Registered User Posts: 23 Junior Member
    Maryland, D3, Both Financial Aids, Not possible for my family
  • bleedorangebabybleedorangebaby Registered User Posts: 134 Junior Member
  • moooopmoooop Registered User Posts: 2,035 Senior Member
    edited February 11
    Sounds like he wants to study chem eng, & play division 3 tennis. That eliminates a few of the usual suspects: Clarkson & WPI have no tennis team; Union College (NY) doesn't have chem eng. How about Stevens Institute in NJ, RPI in NY, Case Western Reserve, Carnegie Mellon, Illinois Institute of Tech, U of Rochester, Rose-Hulman?

    If you have preferences on urban/smaller town & region of the country that would help narrow things down. Also, are you hoping to go to a really intense academic school where you'd be towards the middle of the pack, or maybe one where your academic credentials would put you towards the top of your class?
  • TemperantiaTemperantia Registered User Posts: 200 Junior Member
    Lafayette, maybe. It is D1 but Patriot League.
  • tk21769tk21769 Registered User Posts: 10,495 Senior Member
    edited February 11
    Your qualifications are strong enough for a shot at admissions nearly anywhere. However, your family's financial situation, combined with your interest in chemical engineering, may cause constraints that all but rule out some kinds of colleges.

    The best colleges for chemical engineering tend to be mid-sized to large research universities, including state flagships, directional state universities, and a relative few selective private universities. Public universities typically give little or no (or insufficient) need-based aid to OOS students. So, you may need to rule many of them out, but it depends on how much aid you would need, and whether you can make up any deficit from student loans (or other kinds of "self help"). A few OOS public universities may offer large merit scholarships automatically for qualifying stats; of these, the most respected (or at least the highest ranked) probably is the University of Alabama (https://scholarships.ua.edu/types/out-of-state.php).

    About 60 colleges, almost all of them private, claim to cover 100% of demonstrated financial need. Half or more of these are small LACs, which you can rule out in all/most cases because they don't have any (or strong) chemical engineering programs. Of the remainder, most/all the ones with strong ChemE programs are super selective private research universities such as MIT, CalTech, Stanford, and the Ivies. Cornell might be a good choice ... but run the online net price calculators on any of these schools that might interest you. If the NPCs show a significant gap between the Expected Family Contribution and what your parents actually can afford to pay (even with reasonable loans) then you may need to rule these schools out.

    Chances are, all things considered, the school to beat for combined ChemE quality and net cost will be your state flagship. UMCP seems to be have strong engineering programs. The schools that offer big merit scholarships automatically for qualifying stats may not be as strong academically as UMCP; their net costs won't necessarily be too much lower after factoring in travel etc. Few if any OOS public universities, or private universities, are likely to be so much stronger in ChemE than your state flagship that they clearly are worth a big price premium (if financial ROI is your standard). The ones that are likely to offer competitive net prices (after n-b aid) are super selective even for highly qualified applicants (but may be worth a shot if they appeal to you).

    Your qualifications are strong enough that you should at least check out the Banneker/Key scholarships.
  • Carucatuc1Carucatuc1 Registered User Posts: 23 Junior Member
    Thanks for your response! I'll look into the NPC.
  • aquaptaquapt Registered User Posts: 1,628 Senior Member
    Tufts would be an excellent potential reach school for you. D3 tennis, ChemE, and excellent financial aid. They don't give merit though, so as per the advice above, run the NPC and see whether your projected out-of-pocket matches what you could really pay. Your SAT is just slightly above median for the whole university, which means it's probably a little below median for engineering; but you have a great GPA and a strong EC profile so I think you'd have a chance even without athletic recruitment, and if they did want you for tennis that could definitely tilt the decision in your favor. Every school's athletic department will have a recruitment form you can fill out on their website; here's Tufts' for example: http://www.gotuftsjumbos.com/sports/mtennis/recruitForm Filling these out will put you on radar.

    WashU is another D3+ChemE possibility. And close to home I'm sure Hopkins must already be on your radar. As mooop (give or take o's) already suggested, CWRU and URochester would be terrific options with both merit and full-need-met aid. (Again, check the NPC's to see whether their formulae are generous enough for you, and look into whether the maximum possible merit would make them affordable) RPI, Stevens, Rose-Hulman, Carnegie Mellon - these are not full-need-met schools, so it's definitely worth applying to any that seem like a good fit, but affordability will be harder to predict.

    The reachiest D3's with tennis and ChemE are, of course, MIT and Caltech. It might be hard to crack this level without a 1500+ SAT, but I'm not personally familiar with how much athletic recruitment might help. You might try taking the ACT just to see whether it turns out to be a more favorable test for you. (I don't mean to "dis" your 1490 - obviously that's a great score - just talking about stratospherically competitive schools here.)

    Your state flagship is a great option academically and financially - it depends how important D3 tennis is to you, and whether your sport might open doors at a school you would also prefer in other ways.

    If, as Temperantia suggests, the D1 Patriot League schools might be an option, then Lehigh, Bucknell, and BU might be possibilities as well as Lafayette. The PA schools would likely consider you URM as well, as Asians/Pacific Islanders are underrepresented there in contrast to many other regions.
  • GoCubsGo719GoCubsGo719 Registered User Posts: 102 Junior Member
    This may get shot down by other posters and I'm not sure if the sport of tennis is an exception to other sports, but I wouldn't be able if you could use tennis as a hook into getting into Ivies. I think your credentials are good enough to at least give you a reasonable chance at admission, but the Ivies often play and recruit at a D3 level for most sports so even if your not D1 material, you may have the skill necessary there. If that's of interest to you, I'd recommend reaching out to some coaches. As for which Ivies are good for Chemical Engineering, I'm not sure I can help you in that respect. Best of luck in whatever you may try though.
  • Carucatuc1Carucatuc1 Registered User Posts: 23 Junior Member
    Is there anything in my application that stands out?
  • privatebankerprivatebanker Registered User Posts: 2,323 Senior Member
    edited February 13
    Yes. Perfect gpa. Great test scores. Top 3 class rank. Competitive tennis player. Potentially URM. Pretty much all of it stands out.
  • Carucatuc1Carucatuc1 Registered User Posts: 23 Junior Member
    Is Filipino/White is considered URM?
  • StudentBMA2StudentBMA2 Registered User Posts: 50 Junior Member
    edited February 13
    You're from Maryland, I'm pretty sure John's Hopkins is D3 in tennis, so I'd definitely reach out to the coach if I were you, that would be a great option because it's a great school and you'd be a competitive applicant if you meet their athletic standards.
    I'd also look into Tufts as the person above mentioned. That's a great school too with D3 sports!
    You could also try MIT because that's D3 and it's a great school for chem engineering, although of course it'd still be a bit of a challenge to get into, as it would for any other competitive applicant like you.
    Washington University in St. Louis and NYU are also great D3 schools!

    Now in the event that you end up not wanting to play tennis in college, other great options given your stats would be Vanderbilt (they give great financial aid), Cornell, Georgetown (which I think actually is D3 but don't quote me on that one), the UCs (UCLA, UCB, Cal Tech), UT-Austin, Yale.

    The best approach you could take would be to come up with a list of schools, both ones you could potentially play tennis at and others you couldn't. Fill out recruit forms for the schools you think you have the potential to play at and see if you get any responses from coaches. If anything, this will actually be a hook for you to get into some of the more competitive schools I've listed. From experience, I can tell you that if you're passionate about playing in college and have that motivation, it never hurts to reach out. I was able to get recruited myself and received recruiting emails from schools I would have never been able to get into without my athletic hook. Best of luck to you!
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