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Several questions about engineering from a high school freshman

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Replies to: Several questions about engineering from a high school freshman

  • T3mp23490283T3mp23490283 Registered User Posts: 37 Junior Member
    I have already solved all the hard ones, some with guidance though :(
  • cosmicfishcosmicfish Registered User Posts: 4,245 Senior Member
    edited December 2014
    Then solve harder ones! There are always more out there! And try tutoring other students, as that not only looks good on applications, it also really helps your own understanding!

    But back to your original questions...
    1.) Aside from self interest, what are the benefits of going into an engineering school as opposed to medicine?
    Well, doctors have to put up with a lot of things that other professions don't, including 4 years of medical school plus 3-7 years of modestly paid residency. You also don't have to pay for malpractice insurance or be on call on weekends or any of the other issues that make medicine unattractive without the big paycheck. Plus the fact that everyone goes in wanting to be a surgeon but a heck of a lot of bright, talented, motivated students wind up as podiatry residents at minor hospitals - not everyone gets to be a Hopkins neurosurgeon!
    I have a C in Algebra 2 Honors that I have been working my ass off over the winter break on to get to a B by the end of the semester. Granted, I am skipping a grade of math, but if I get a B, or god forbid, a C in the semester course how will this impact my chances of getting into an Ivy level school?
    On it's own, probably not... but the top schools are extremely competitive, and if you are a marginal admit then sure, this could tip the scale. But the profession of engineering is pretty forgiving when it comes to school name - any decent school will give you good opportunities.
  • T3mp23490283T3mp23490283 Registered User Posts: 37 Junior Member
    So after some blood, sweat, and tears, I did finally pull off a B- in the class (80%).

    My current weighted GPA is a 3.77 (A, A-, A+, A-, B-, A-), but I am getting a bit more serious in school and hope to pull off at least a 4.0 next semester.

    I wanted to ask, what weighted GPA should I strive for when I enter college? Because my current GPA is a bit on the lower end, I want to work harder for a better GPA and want an aim.

    I plan to self study AP Bio and AP Chinese, hopefully get a 5 on both by the end of the school year, and start looking for extracurrics.

    Thank you for all the help!
  • Miles PerraraMiles Perrara Registered User Posts: 156 Junior Member
    Congratulations on bringing your grade up.
    The schools you named in your original post are all very selective and difficult to get into. Many of the applicants will have 4.0 UW GPAs and very high SAT or ACT scores. Ideally, you aim for a 4.0 GPA (unweighted) each year. However, striving for a high GPA must be done with some recognition of your strengths and weaknesses. If you struggle with writing, you may find English composition classes to be difficult, or chemistry concepts may be difficult to master. Above all, don't let the drive to get a high GPA lead you into unethical behaviors or downright cheating. In other words, don't let getting good grades distort your perspectives of school.
    Extracurriculars are very important so don't necessarily put them off until the end of the school year. There are several different reasons for choosing your ECs. One reason is to provide an outlet from classes, studying and academics. These ECs can be sports, atheletics, music, art, etc. Being a good citizen or your religion might lead you to find community service or volunteer work. You can use extracurriculars to provide some insight and additional information on your interests. For example, you asked about medicine in your first post. Look for volunteer jobs at hospitals and medical centers. See if there are any available volunteer jobs at local museums where you can help in classes or demonstrations. In your school, see what clubs, such as math club or robotics are available. You can try a variety of ECs in your early HS years, but will probably want to find the ones of greatest interest to focus on as you get to be a senior. Best Wishes.
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