I'm currently a rising Senior, but I'm not sure where I should be applying. There are a few extremely selective institutions (in particular Caltech and Brown) whose campuses I've visited and fallen in love with, but I fear that I stand not a snowball's chance in hell of being admitted to such a university. Although my ACT and subject test scores are above the 75th percentile at every school I've considered, this is only sufficient to get my foot in the door. With MIT's 9% acceptance rate for near-perfect scores (which represent roughly-equivalent attainment to perfect scores under current ceilings), a bland, unhooked white male should only look forward to being thrown in the refuse pile, no matter how academically accomplished he may be. This being the case, I have spent much time agonizing over whether it would even behoove me to set my sights above the mid-tier state schools. Others have on occasion complimented my (supposedly) acuminous leadership skills, but I have not assumed (both due to lack of opportunity and lack of desire to do so) any impactful leadership positions during my tenure in high school. I am willing to accept responsibility for the consequent portrayal of myself on college applications as an academic robot, but would also like to find a college where I might both be content and have a reasonable chance of admission. With that in mind, here are my stats:13 replies
- ACT (10th grade): 36 (36 M, 36 E, 35 S, 36 R)
- SAT II (11th grade: 800 Math 2, 800 Physics
- 9th Grade AP Tests: 5 Physics C: Mechanics, 5 Calculus AB
- 10th Grade AP Tests: 5 Physics C: Electricity & Magnetism, 5 Calculus BC (self-study-ish: already studied calculus in middle school using online resources and textbooks, also reviewed some material with teacher; 5 AB Subscore), 4 Chemistry, 5 Statistics (self-studied for a couple days before the exam)
- 11th Grade AP Tests: 5 Biology, 5 Computer Science A, 4 English Language (self-studied literally one day before the exam), 4 Microeconomics (same as Lang), 4 Macroeconomics (same as Lang and Micro)
- GPA (High School): 3.946 (1st semester 11th grade, will be higher when applying, one B+ in Mandarin)
- GPA (College and Graduate Classes): 4.0
- College and College-level Coursework (post-AP): Differential Equations (200-level), General Biology (100-level), Modern Genetics (300-level), Molecular Cell Biology (300-level), Bioinformatics (300-level), Introduction to Music Theory (100-level), Life Fitness Training (100-level), Methods for Partial Differential Equations (400/500-level), Introduction to Complex Analysis, Introduction to Quantum Mechanics; will be taking Thermal Physics (200-level), Fluid Dynamics (500-level), and Computational Modeling of Biological Systems (500-level) in the Fall; anticipate taking Introduction to Dynamical Systems and Chaos (400/500-level), Calculus of Variations (500-level), Biophysics (400-level), Applications of Quantum Physics (500-level), Advanced Dynamical Systems (500-level), Advanced Methods for Partial Differential Equations (500-level), and Cognitive Psychology (200-level) before finishing high school.
- Extracurriculars: PROMYS (after 11th grade, attending advanced seminars in Algebra and Combinatorics), RCYS Summer Stretch Number Theory (after 9th grade), Aerospace & Rocketry Club (at college, 11th grade-present, high school has no serious clubs), Physics Club (11th grade, at college), self-studying advanced topics in math, origami, kayaking, programming (including the creation of a mod for The Witcher 3 that now has over 79000 downloads), will start research with professor in the Fall, will probably volunteer at Stonerose Interpretive Center in the Fall, participated in NACLO without any preparation and almost made the cut so will take again as a Senior, considering starting a Linguistics club but unlikely to occur before applications are due if at all.
- Awards: Basically none. Three-year pi recitation champion at high school, science fair project deemed "most likely to save the world" (on diffusion problems and pollution), National AP Scholar, did not take PSAT/NMSQT so ineligible for NMS.
- Essays: Haven't started yet, but my writing is quite mediocre. I suspect that I may perform relatively well on "creative"-type supplements such as UChicago's.
- Letters of Recommendation: Will probably ask professor who taught PDEs and is teaching Fluid Dynamics (~9/10) and either USH teacher (~7/10) or professor for Philosophy of Science (if I take it in the Fall, which is uncertain, ?/10 but probably higher than 7).
- Demographics: White male, family income in the 99th percentile nationally.