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Columbia or Swarthmore Early Decision (very hard to decide)

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Replies to: Columbia or Swarthmore Early Decision (very hard to decide)

  • monstor344monstor344 Registered User Posts: 2,502 Senior Member
    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.
    That's not at all what he is implying. He IS implying that Columbia will lower its expectations for URMs, but to extrapolate and say that he's saying Columbia will disregard qualifications is silly.

    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.
  • Smart GuySmart Guy Registered User Posts: 167 Junior Member
    monster344 wrote:
    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.
    I think Columbia will be the destination of choice for top African Americans (although Harvard is always attractive) due to a number of factors: (1) new African American dean; (2) new African American Provost; (3) prominent alumni who are the firsts in the history of the Country (Obama, President, Holder, Attorney General, and Paterson, Governor)--quite impressive! Being next door to Harlem also helps.

    I thought Kwu was suggesting that other elite schools don't practice some form of affirmative action, which we all know is untrue. Whether you call it athletic admits or legacies, they are all the same.
  • confidentialcollconfidentialcoll Registered User Posts: 2,491 Senior Member
    Yeah, Columbia might have to lower its standards less than other schools simply by virtue of it's applicant pool and location. The class of 2013 is 12-13% African American, and 16% Latino, these are higher than the US averages for those ethnic groups, but significantly lower than the proportion present in New York City. Given that the applicant pool is [inter]national but also heavier weighted locally, Columbia would easily receive more minority applicants than peer schools. Columbia has also historically had some of the highest proportions of minorities in the ivy league. Plus factors like Obama, Holder, Patterson, and location near Harlem come into play.

    If they are receiving more minority applicants they don't need to try as hard to fill a certain percentage of the class. The current class of 2013 make up is something like:

    23% Asian
    12-13% African American
    15% Latino
    30% Jewish
    25% White, non-Jewish

    (I'm guessing there's some overlap between white and latino, Jewish and latino and white and asian)

    All things considered though, being Black or Hispanic definitely helps, the acceptance rate even within these groups will still be brutally low (my guess is like 15% instead of the 10% average)
  • glassesarechicglassesarechic Registered User Posts: 5,487 Senior Member
    You're a URM (1/4 counts) with decent test scores. If you get your scores even higher, your chances go up even more (imagine that). If you apply ED to either school, your chances of admission go up (imagine that), especially for Swarthmore, which I think accepts a higher percentage of its class from ED than Columbia. However, I honestly can't fathom what your magical reason for having to apply ED is. If you like the schools equally or almost equally, ED probably isn't a good idea. But since you keep pushing for specifics, I'd say your chances are higher at Swarthmore because a)LACs tend to be really big on demonstrated interest, so ED plus beastly essays and campus visits could be enough to push you over the edge, and b)LACs also tend to be whiter than their Ivy counterparts, for whatever reason, so a minority might be more attractive.

    However, and I know you keep hearing this, but ED is for those who have made up their mind, not for the wishy washy trying to boost their chances of admission. Your chances RD are decent; you don't need ED. Take the extra time to think more carefully about which school you like best, then see if they like you back.
  • golfer3golfer3 Registered User Posts: 638 Member
    I have decided on Columbia ED. I have thought long and hard about it and clearly love Columbia more. If I do well on the November SAT and the subject test (Saturday). I think I will have a decent shot. Thanks for the help everyone.
    -Hopefully a future Columbia student!!
  • monstor344monstor344 Registered User Posts: 2,502 Senior Member
    Best of luck.
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