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Chances for prep schools? (i.e. Lawrenceville, Exeter, etc.)

mediocratesmediocrates 3 replies6 threads New Member
Hi everyone,
So....I’m in 6th grade, but I’d like to start thinking about this high school thing earlier (don’t judge me). I know I have more time to improve, but I’d really like any advice you could give, or any semblance of direction.

I go to a pretty small school, and we don’t get a lot of opportunities to do things, so please keep that in mind. I’ve always wanted to be part of a debate team, but my school doesn’t even support that. I’ve been Googling all over the place to find myself different chances, such as online courses or competitions.

My extracurriculars: I’ve been playing piano for nine years, and have won multiple national and international competitions, and compose some music as well just for fun. I also have been playing the oboe for two years, and am joining a regional orchestra soon. My main thing is writing, and I am working on my second book. My first book is currently in the finals of a publishing competition, and I’m hoping it will go through. I’m also in the Nationals of the National History Bee.
As for my grades; I get straight A’s, but...I’m Asian. And judging by some of the things I’ve seen written on CC, grades don’t make that much of a difference unless they’re bad.
My SSAT is in the 99th percentile for reading, writing, and verbal. Quantitive is 93rd percentile.

Thank you for your attention, I would appreciate any guidance.
If there are any good competitions or academic opportunities you could suggest, that would be great as well.
8 replies
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Replies to: Chances for prep schools? (i.e. Lawrenceville, Exeter, etc.)

  • confusedaboutFAconfusedaboutFA 42 replies8 threads Junior Member
    Can't tell if you're ****, but I didn't think about my applications until late May of my 7th grade year. I didn't even know the SSAT existed until then. Why put yourself through this torture?
    Anyways, I'm also Asian (Indian), and I got into L'ville this year with way worse ECs than you. No worries, just don't screw up your grades (contrary to what you think, grades are one of the most important parts of your application). Also, form good relationships with your teachers so you can get those recommendations when you need them.
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  • CC4lifeCC4life 251 replies10 threads Junior Member
    edited May 2019
    I just want to point out that the middle level SSAT that you are taking will not really be important for your app because you have to take the upper level SSAT when applying for 9th grade. Thus, while your SSAT score is good, it is still very early to tell how that score will translate to an upper level score considering that you will have a lot more rigorous math, reading, and vocabulary sections on upper level test.
    edited May 2019
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  • andoverblue21andoverblue21 20 replies4 threads Junior Member
    heyo! it's good that you're starting your research early

    your ssat score looks good and make sure you keep up the work you did to prepare for that test to do well on the ssat. i'm a current 10th grader at Andover and most students at boarding schools at the levels of the schools you listed usually get in the 90ish range. lol and yeah your EC's are wayy better than mine as I only have one national art competition under my belt lol. Just keep up the good work and good luck!
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  • mediocratesmediocrates 3 replies6 threads New Member
    Thank you so much for the replies! The advice is really helpful; sorry if I was coming off the wrong way in my post, though. One thing—will it matter much that I’m pretty much a potato and don’t play any sports at all?
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  • CaliMexCaliMex 2053 replies34 threads Senior Member
    So.. why Exeter and Lawrenceville?
    Just curious as to what you are looking for in a school.
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  • mediocratesmediocrates 3 replies6 threads New Member
    Lawrenceville, because apparently they have a really good language arts program, and I’ve heard about the “house” dorm system from my friend who lives in that area, which seems like it could be quite interesting—Exeter because the debate team in my school is nonexistent, and from the website you can see so many different extracurricular opportunities. I think high school is where I want to expand my horizons a bit more, and these schools specialize in the certain interests that I want to pursue.
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  • gardenstategalgardenstategal 6460 replies10 threads Senior Member
    Those are good reasons for those schools, @mediocrates. There are lots of schools that have those (or some variant), so one of the things you should do, since you still have time, is start to research a wider range of schools.

    Take a look at curriculum to see where you can continue your writing. Check out sports requirements. Look at arts requirements and orchestras. It's easiest to get into schools where you can be who you genuinely are and want to be.
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  • RedLionessRedLioness 166 replies1 threads Junior Member
    Well, don't think a 6th grader can be chanced, but I will offer some advice. That said, I began considering the idea of applying to prep school before I finished elementary school, so I can't really judge you on that.

    I didn't apply to Lawrenceville and know very little about the school, but one of Exeter's mottos is 'non sibi', not for oneself. It might be prudent to do some community service (but don't stay in just for the sake of applying - that's a waste of time). Maybe join the National Junior Honor Society?

    Here's the thing about academics, from what I know. As long as you have good grades and a strong SSAT result, it won't do you harm. But since a decent amount of applicants also have good grades and a strong SSAT, you shouldn't count on those getting you in. They merely make sure your application is considered seriously as someone who could do well academically.

    The fact that you're Asian has little bearing on your grades, just places you in a more competitive applicant pool since admissions offices are building a class of students who compliment each other and fill the school's needs. They want a diversity of students. Unfortunately for you, if I had a dime for every Asian applying to prep schools, I would likely have a very significant increase in my finances.

    You seem to have focus and direction in what you want to pursue, so I want to say you have a strong chance if you keep working hard and continue in your ECs. However, admissions is dependent on the pool you are in, and many competitive students apply to places like Lawrenceville and Exeter. Admissions rates are low and competition is high, and difficulty in achieving admittance seems to rise every year. Make sure to add some match and safety schools and cast a wide net, since if boarding school is your goal (or leaving your current school, as it were), a wide net is key so you have a seat somewhere on your M10. I hope to continue to see you on the boards!
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