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Chance my child for Dartmouth ED

nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
My daughter is a long shot for any top tier school and her hope is to get into McGill (which she has the stats for) but she is planning on applying at some elite schools on the off chance she might get in. Dartmouth, in particular, is a school she's interested in. Here are her stats/info.

Middle-class town, average public school in NH.
class rank 5/220
weighted gpa 4.351
unweighted 3.75
only 1 AP completed (lit & comp. 5 on exam)
currently enrolled in 3 AP classes (not easy to fit them in at her school).
15+ honors classes
ACT 33: math 30, science 32, english 34, reading 35. awaiting writing score
SAT (will not submit) 1400 690v 710m.
2 subject tests with 6?? on each (will not submit unless required)
state champion "we the people" unit/team
2nd in state in academic world quest competition which got her a scholarship to a model G20 summit at Cambridge University
English dept. award as Junior
Smith book award (probably meaningless)
attended McGill summer academy
finalist in pursuasive speech competition
excellent letters of recommendation
grew up on a working farm doing farmwork and working at our stand
hundreds of hours of volunteer work
she would be applying as an English major

I know having only 1 AP is bad, but there are very few offered at her school and it's very difficult to fit them in until senior year.

I don't know what else to include.

Any opinions appreciated.
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Replies to: Chance my child for Dartmouth ED

  • socaldad2002socaldad2002 1428 replies29 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Last year the ED acceptance rate was 23% (565 of 2474) but if you strip away as reported bu the college the 138 recruited athletes, 119 projected vals/sals, and 25 questbridge students, the rate drops to 13%.

    That means that your student will be competing with with at least 2192 students for a remaining 292 spots. And remember this does not take into account that each year, more kids will be applying ED. Last year the # of students applying ED increased 9%.

    I like your student's EC but the the bottom line is that ED does not give much of a boost, if any, to the "unhooked" early decision student. I give her chance of acceptance at 10%. Good luck!
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  • nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Thanks for the info about ed acceptance rates not being as high as they seem. I haven't seen that one before.
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  • tdy123tdy123 735 replies14 threadsRegistered User Member
    @socaldad2002 I agree with your comments on stripping out classes of admitted students from the ED numbers to figure out what the real chances are for an unhooked applicant, but why strip away 119 projected vals/sals? Isn't that just equivalent to "unhooked smart kids?"
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  • socaldad2002socaldad2002 1428 replies29 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    tdy123 wrote: »
    @socaldad2002 I agree with your comments on stripping out classes of admitted students from the ED numbers to figure out what the real chances are for an unhooked applicant, but why strip away 119 projected vals/sals? Isn't that just equivalent to "unhooked smart kids?"

    Because OP daughter will likely not be a projected Val/Sal which Dartmouth seems to favor in ED (i.e. there seems to be a “tip” for this group in ED).

    I also did not include URM, special development cases, legacy, special talent, and international applicants.

    The pool of available spots for applicants without these hooks, tips, etc is very small, which is my point.

    ED at most of the top colleges is rarely a boost to the average excellent, unhooked applicant but applicants continue to think otherwise. My advice is to proceed with caution....
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  • tdy123tdy123 735 replies14 threadsRegistered User Member
    edited September 26
    @socaldad2002 Thank you. I wasn't aware that Dartmouth gives any kind of boost to Vals/Sals in ED round. Wonder how that works out with >35,000 high schools (26K public + 10K private) yielding >70,000 Vals/Sals. Seems like a not insignificant portion of the otherwise unhooked ED applicants ought to fit in that category, unless it is an attempt by Dartmouth to pull in some of the kids who would otherwise be aiming for YHPMS.
    edited September 26
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  • socaldad2002socaldad2002 1428 replies29 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 26
    tdy123 wrote: »
    @socaldad2002 Thank you. I wasn't aware that Dartmouth gives any kind of boost to Vals/Sals in ED round. Wonder how that works out with >35,000 high schools (26K public + 10K private) yielding >70,000 Vals/Sals. Seems like a not insignificant portion of the otherwise unhooked ED applicants ought to fit in that category, unless it is an attempt by Dartmouth to pull in some of the kids who would otherwise be aiming for YHPMS.

    I understand your point but you are not going to have 70K vals/sals apply ED to Dartmouth but for the ones that do, Dartmouth seems to like them as 21% of the ED class comes from this demographic.

    Here's an article from the college newspaper you might find interesting:

    https://www.thedartmouth.com/article/2019/01/dartmouth-accepts-574-students-early-decision-for-the-class-of-2023
    edited September 26
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  • nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    I work at a large public high school (not the one my daughter attends) and I can confirm anecdotally that only valedictorians from my school have been accepted at ivies In the 15 years I’ve worked there.
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  • HMom16HMom16 702 replies18 threadsRegistered User Member
    Many unhooked non-valedictorians attend Dartmouth. None of the kids attending from my daughter's high school were valedictorians, salutorians or recruited athletes. However, all had meaningful involvement in some activity and had excellent recommendations. Dartmouth asks for a peer recommendation as well as teacher/counselor recommendations. They seem to truly look at the application holistically.
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  • DadTwoGirlsDadTwoGirls 5501 replies1 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I think that your daughter has a very good chance at McGill, and UNH would appear to be a good safety. With these probably both "in the bank", I do not see any harm in applying ED to Dartmouth and just seeing what happens.

    I think that Dartmouth is a long shot. However, if she were only applying to UNH, McGill, and Dartmouth, then I would expect her to get to attend a good school next year. Of course you could throw in a few other applications (perhaps UVM or U.Mass, or another Canadian school from your other threads, and/or a couple more reaches) if you want to do so.
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  • lookingforwardlookingforward 34100 replies376 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited September 27
    I don't see ECs- ordinary clubs, other engagements, incl comm service. I see some competitions/awards. That's different. There needs to be a way to show peer engagement, locally, of the sort any tippy top likes and wants to see.

    As for Val/Sal rates, it's not a simple matter of "preferring" them. Any kid getting an ED admit needs to fill the whole bill, not just hs stats and how that hs calculates. You'd need to know how many V/S apply an do not get admitted, ED or RD.

    This kid is top 2%. That's good.

    But any kid getting any admit needs the same compelling "match." Then, there's filtering for institutional needs.

    edited September 27
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  • sgopal2sgopal2 3483 replies49 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Geography plays a role here. Being so close in NH, doesn't seem to help.

    Have you considered ED to another similar caliber college? Perhaps farther away? She would have a much better chance. Colleges like: Vandy, Rice, WashU, UChicago??
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  • nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Hmom16. I’m sure that’s true. At the inner-city school I work at only a handful of kids have been accepted at ivies (mostly Dartmouth) in the time I’ve been here and all were the valedictorian. We have had a non-Val go to mit, and a kid barely in the top 10 got a full ride to Georgetown.
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  • nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Dadtwogirls, she’ll be applying at UNH (safety), McGill and Ottawa and possibly umass Amherst as target achools, and then not really sure. She wants to be in a city and it needs to be <$45k. McGill is her dream school and where she wants to go and she seems to have all the required stats, but just in case she’s going to apply at a few elite schools. She didn’t like Cornell when we visited. Required to take 2 gym classes? Dartmouth isn’t in a city, but it’s Ivy League and near home. After that she’s not really sure.
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  • nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Sgopal2, I agree about proximity. She doesn’t want to be too far from home, but I’m encouraging her to look at schools located in cities with direct flights to Manchester. DC is one of those cities. So is Chicago. NYC is a bus ride, but I don’t think we can afford anything there. Same with Boston. BC will be too expensive. Harvard probably no shot. Brown maybe.
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  • nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Looking forward: she doesn’t do many clubs. Book club. A club that volunteers at an elder care facility. I forgot to mention nat honor society. Our farm eats up a lot of her time.
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  • RiversiderRiversider 842 replies101 threadsRegistered User Member
    edited September 27
    Houston has two major airports and offers lots of cheap direct flights most places or nearest urban airports. It’s very affordable and Rice is cheaper than rest of top 20 colleges. Their new generous aid initiative helps families with income up to $200K and merit/athletic scholarships may make it affordable for you. You may get additional points in admission for bringing geographical diversity. It’s worth a try.
    edited September 27
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  • nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Thanks riversider, but Texas is too far. Last year’s salutatorian at the school I work at applied at rice for all the reasons you mentioned. Didn’t get in. His test scores were a little lower than my daughter, but he had mountains of achievements and ec’s and he was class president. And his family could pay a lot of tuition. Truly exceptional young man.
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  • socaldad2002socaldad2002 1428 replies29 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    As for Val/Sal rates, it's not a simple matter of "preferring" them. Any kid getting an ED admit needs to fill the whole bill, not just hs stats and how that hs calculates. You'd need to know how many V/S apply an do not get admitted, ED or RD.


    For 2019:

    49% were val/sal (38.4% of admitted students are valedictorians and 10.1% are salutatorians.)

    Definitely a correlation between having the highest GPA in your senior class and admissions to Dartmouth.
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  • oscar63oscar63 368 replies4 threadsRegistered User Member
    @nhtigerdad I think she has a shot. I would definitely talk about working on the farm in her application because that is unusual. Good Luck!
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  • nhtigerdadnhtigerdad 35 replies8 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Thank you Oscar 63. I think the farm aspect is kind of a hook. She’s 4th generation, and refers to herself, accurately, as “3rd in command” after her mom and aunt who co-own the business. Women owned and operated farm. She’s toying with the idea of writing an essay comparing herself, a squash planter and picker, to some of the other applicants who grew up playing squash.
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