I'm taking a year off and I want to know how you think I'd fair next fall applying ED.
Rigor of Classes: full-IB diploma candidate
GPA: 4.16, weighted
Rank: 1 of ~350
SAT I: 650 V, 720 M, 700 W (I know this is low, I plan to try the ACT)
SAT II: 750 Math II, 680 Literature, 610 U.S. History
IB: 7 Math Studies SL, 6 Physics SL (will take English HL, Anthropology SL, French HL, and History HL in May)
AP: 4 US Government (will take Calculus AB in May)
High School Extracurriculars:
-School Newspaper (9-12): Editor-in-Chief (11-12), Lifestyles Editor (10)
-Election 2006 Volunteer Work (12): Jim Webb campaign, Arlington Electoral Board
-Student Government Association (11-12): Class Treasurer
-Social Studies Honor Society (11-12): President
-Marching Band - Color Guard (10-12): Captain (12)
-Girls' Varsity, JV, and Freshman Basketball (9-12): Manager/Scorekeeper
-Youth Philanthropists of the Washington Region (11-12): Northern Virginia representative
-Leadership Arlington (11): Washington-Lee representative
-Television Production Crew (12): Anchor, Technician
-Bookseller at Barnes & Noble (12): 16 hrs/wk
National French Honor Society (9-12), Quill & Scroll Society (11-12), Honor Roll (9-12), CSPA Gold Medal for newspaper (11), CSPA Silver Medal for newspaper (9-10), IB English 11 Student of the Semester (11), VHSL Excellent rating for newspaper (9,11) **NOTE: I'm up for several more journalism awards that I will hear about later this year and will be able to include in my application.
Summer: press intern for U.S. Senator or Representative
Fall: learn Arabic abroad
Winter: teach English abroad in the Middle East or Africa
Spring: intern at MERIP (publishes a journal concerning Middle Eastern affairs)
Summer: volunteer/intern for Presidential campaign
-Strong interest in the Middle East: I wrote my Extended Essay, a 4000-word independent research paper on foreign intervention in Palestine between the World Wars. I want to intern for a Senator on the Foreign Relations Committee. I will have knowledge of Arabic and will have visited the region. I plan to apply as a Middle Eastern Studies major.
-Dedication to journalism: I was on my high school staff for four years and spent countless hours working on the paper. I will send a recommendation from my advisor who loves me. I first learned of Columbia through their annual journalism convention. I plan to be a press intern and also write for MERIP's journal. I also plan on joining the Spectator staff and have already spoken with several current editors.
-Political Involvement: I will have worked on two campaigns by the time I enroll in Fall '08.
So what do you think? I know my high school extracurriculars are a bit all over the place and my scores aren't high enough, but do you think my gap-year plans reveal my focus and passion for the Middle East enough for the admissions officers to overlook that?