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College List

nickthekidnickthekid 120 replies48 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
Is 7-8 target schools, 3-4 reach schools, and 3-4 safety schools a balanced and reasonable college list? Thanks.
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Replies to: College List

  • jackhitch1jackhitch1 6 replies1 threadsRegistered User New Member
    Applying to 13 schools(on the low end) is a lot of money to pay for applications. The only person who can deem the list reasonable is you. If you are okay with applying to that many schools, I see no problem.
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  • nickthekidnickthekid 120 replies48 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Yes I am willing to spend the time and money to apply to 13-16 schools. So would you say that is a balanced enough list, regardless of the price and size of it?
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  • eb23282eb23282 525 replies16 threadsRegistered User Member
    Seems like overkill to me. 4 safeties? 8 targets? What's the point?
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  • nickthekidnickthekid 120 replies48 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Maximize my chances, see which colleges give me the best financial aid package/merit scholarships.
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  • eb23282eb23282 525 replies16 threadsRegistered User Member
    then why stop at 13? Why not 25?
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  • nickthekidnickthekid 120 replies48 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Does that make sense? Or should I just apply to 5 and be happy?
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  • bjkmombjkmom 7942 replies158 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    What matters most is what's OK with you and your parents, not us.

    That said, let's see whether we can save you some money.
    Let's start with those 3-4 safeties. Are they true safeties?? As in, you're pretty- very -- sure you'll get in and-- here's the important part-- you'll be happy to attend them?? If not, then find 2 or 3 safeties that meet that description.

    Now let's look at those 7-8 target schools. I'm guessing you could order them from best to worst? So could you cut the last 2 or 3 from that list and still be happy?

    And those 3-4 reach schools-- could you do the same? Order them from high to low, and lose the lowest?

    If so, then you've just dropped 5 or 6 schools from your list, and saved yourself a few hundred dollars.
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  • nickthekidnickthekid 120 replies48 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Thank you, that’s very helpful.
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  • KnowsstuffKnowsstuff 3971 replies16 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    edited July 21
    So in my area of the country that is a pretty normal amount. But... (get some popcorn 🍿).....
    We started looking with my son at all the engineering schools that we thought we be a good fit. We looked at the top 50 schools and came away with 38!! (Looked online)
    Gave us a great appreciations for all the great schools out there. My sons real list was 5 -7 schools mixed with reaches, matches and safeties. His counselor said like 10 is too much but 7-8 was reasonable.
    But since we were willing to pay for it since we, the parents, were the ones scared since it's so competitive, he ended up applying to like 16 schools. After the fact and looking back it was just silly. He ended up getting pretty much accepted to his top 5 schools and still took time to decide between the top two.
    A good friend of ours told us (she is a real college counselor) that once you get past 10 it just makes it confusing for the students.
    Relook at all your choices. Maybe post them with your unweighted GPA and tests scores and we all might be able to offer you some insight.
    What happens on here at CC is that the student or parents think they have a good solid list of schools and they are like all reaches with the potential of not going to any of their college choices.
    edited July 21
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  • socaldad2002socaldad2002 1326 replies27 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @nickthekid i like your balanced list and approach for maximum merit and options.

    Each year it becomes more and more competitive at most selective colleges. Apply broadly, spend a lot of time on your essays, and don’t worry about the application fee to a few more colleges, its way down on the list of where you should cut expenses IMO. Give it your best shot, you have worked hard in HS and only get one attempt at an undergrad education. Make the most of it.
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  • happy1happy1 22769 replies2242 threadsVerified Member Senior Member
    edited July 21
    It is a reasonable list assuming:
    1) you have run the net price calculators and all of your options (or at least the vast majority of target and safety schools ) appear affordable; and
    2) your parents are willing to pay application fees for all those schools.
    edited July 21
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  • nickthekidnickthekid 120 replies48 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    1. Definitely need to check net price calculators and that will hopefully cut my list down.
    2. My parents are definitely willing to pay the application fees (and I’ll hopefully get some fee waivers as well)
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  • happy1happy1 22769 replies2242 threadsVerified Member Senior Member
    You can sometimes cut down your application list by taking advantage of EA/rolling schools. For example my S got into some affordable schools he liked EA/rolling by December so he did not apply RD to a few safety schools that were lower down on his list.
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  • nickthekidnickthekid 120 replies48 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Very smart, thank you.
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  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 22703 replies15 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    My kids each applied to ONE school. They did their eliminating before applying, applied very early to their first choice, and both received acceptances in October. They also both accepted that if something went wrong, they'd take a gap year.

    If any of your top schools have rolling admissions, you may be able to eliminate all the safeties and most of the targets.
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  • happy1happy1 22769 replies2242 threadsVerified Member Senior Member
    edited July 21
    ^^My kids had no interest in taking a gap year but by applying smart and utilizing EA/rolling (for my S) and ED (for my D) they were able to keep the number of applications manageable. If I remember correctly S applied to 8 schools (including I think three with free applications) and D applied to only 4 colleges (two of which had free applications).
    edited July 21
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  • twoinanddonetwoinanddone 22703 replies15 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Mine didn't want a gap year either (and neither took one) but they also didn't want to apply to a lot of schools. They knew the risk was that if anything happened with the acceptance, or more likely anything with the financial aid aspects, they'd have to take a gap year (or more likely go to a local state school or cc). It all worked out.
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  • nickthekidnickthekid 120 replies48 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    I’m not taking a gap year, I have no want or need for one. And I’m hoping to apply to 10-15 and maybe get 3 or 4 free applications. So the application price will not be too bad. And also I am not applying ED but I will be applying EA for any of the colleges that offer it.
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  • Groundwork2022Groundwork2022 2107 replies31 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I don't think 16 is unreasonable, but it is a lot more work than is ideal. I agree with Happy1's strategy to apply early to a rolling admission school or two, which might eliminate the need for some of the other applications.
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