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Are these bad extracurriculars?

wistfulwordswistfulwords Registered User Posts: 148 Junior Member
A bit of background - I’ve clashed with my school on some issues and they’ve either kicked me out of or totally stopped some extracurriculars ... so for context those with O are mostly done out of school.

Literary magazines (O) - genre editor for prestigious high school litmag, junior editor for academic litmag, and MAY become marketing associate at a third
Journalism (O) - on student board for high school program at Pulitzer Prize winning paper, published in many more (NY Times, LA Times, Times of Israel, Jerusalem Post, Huffington Post, etc.) also managing editor at school newspaper but it’s not so established
Political advocate (O) - this is a sore topic since my school kicked me out of their official political advocacy club because of something I can’t exactly get into. It has to do with my school being private and me being on financial aid. But I’m a part of HSDA and may run for state chair this summer. Plus I’m also the student representative for my neighborhood council.
Debate team captain
Slam poetry (O) - youth board member for international poetry organization. Placed a state competition this year
Charity/Volunteering (O) - won a 1.5k grant this year to run art and writing workshops for underprivileged children... also volunteered 500+ hours in different programs
National English honors society
JV swim (just started, will be on varsity next year)
Varsity cross country - might be captain
Drama - in two plays so far, might not continue

Sorry if they’re good and I just sound like someone who wants praise, but certain ECs that I’m not in (like Model UN and the political club I got kicked out of) are hyped up a lot and I feel like the people in those have an upper leg to me.

Replies to: Are these bad extracurriculars?

  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri Registered User Posts: 8,290 Senior Member
    edited February 17
    I’ve clashed with my school on some issues and they’ve either kicked me out of or totally stopped some extracurriculars

    Do you have a disciplinary record at your school? Will you be able to get strong rec letters from your GC and teachers? Those things matter as much as what type of ECs you do. I don't think the strength of your ECs will matter if your rec letters are weak.

    You're a sophomore eyeing elite colleges. They get thousands of applications every year from stellar applicants. Your ECs are only a small part of your application. Make sure the other parts are competitive too.
  • wistfulwordswistfulwords Registered User Posts: 148 Junior Member
    @austinmshauri no disciplinary record and yes, I can get strong rec letters. Right now I’m solely focused on extracurriculars. I don’t think that anything I’ve done that the school disagrees with is extreme enough to go on my disciplinary record (aka I may be hyperbolizing the situation a bit).
  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri Registered User Posts: 8,290 Senior Member
    Dream colleges:
    Harvard, Yale, Penn, Princeton,
    U chicago, Stanford, Columbia
    Iowa Writers Workshop

    Other colleges I'm thinking of applying to:
    UC Berkely, UCLA,
    Cornell, Carnegie Mellon,
    University of Michigan, NYU

    ECs alone won't get you into any of the colleges on your list. You can look through chance threads for those colleges to see what other students applying to them are doing. Your test scores, unweighted GPA, and finances will also play a part in determining which colleges are a fit for you. If you need financial aid, cast a wide net. Have you taken the PSAT yet?
  • lookingforwardlookingforward Registered User Posts: 31,338 Senior Member
    You're wise to get active out of school. But ensure these are the sorts of stretch (and some impact) your targets want to see. Debate is good, school paper, as are sports and drama. Elite colleges can want to see how you get along with the peer group and the school, not just hours or ECs here and there. I'd tell my kiddo to keep the plays.

    We'd need to know more. And you do, too. Getting into an elite is more than winning a grant or work with a prestigious newspaper. You want to learn what qualities matter for applicants.
  • wistfulwordswistfulwords Registered User Posts: 148 Junior Member
    Took the PSAT 10 and got a 1512. Going to try and keep up my score for next year
  • wistfulwordswistfulwords Registered User Posts: 148 Junior Member
    *1520 not 1512
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