APPLY EARLY TO SWARTHMORE! You are a shoe in there
^I don't disagree with your data from an "apples-to-apples" standpoint, although I have no idea where you got it; I assume you took the data from the same source, for the same year. According to the Columbia website, however, one should note that the middle 50% for the ACT this year was 31-34; according to the email to parents describing the class, the middle 50% for the ACT this year was 31-35. It helps when citing data to attribute the source.
Columbia practices affirmative action flagrantly, and the "Why Columbia?" carries less substantial weight if written fairly convincingly.
kwu presumes that because columbia desires to be the most diverse it must be most willing to accept students of color regardless of their qualifications.
What is interesting though is that of any top school, Columbia has by far the highest percentage of African-American students. I would think that kwu's claim therefore makes sense.