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Reapplying international CC member

girlgoingtounigirlgoingtouni Registered User Posts: 72 Junior Member
Whoever will end up stalking my threads, I applied for class of 2021 to about 10 universities and I didn't get in, and so I'm reapplying. I got plain rejected to all(not even wait listed). When I ask people why they thought I was rejected, they say it was because of my essay. So that you can also have an opinion, this was what my essay was like:

I wrote about how I was in a very difficult and restricting life situation and then I Showed that I only started to show personal and academic improvement when I was no longer in that situation,I.e, when things became better. So it showed that I had 0 resilience and that I couldn't handle tough situations.

Otherwise, my high school transcript is good(we don't record GPA), I have awards(even national awards), and my recommendations were like 10/10 because my teachers really loved me. My sat score wasn't good(I'm rewriting) but I know that wasn't the factor because I know other applicants from my country who also had quite low sat scores but got into schools like Duke, Princeton and MIT and Harvard.

Oh and that essay above was my common app essay.

So I have a question, SHOULD I:

1. Use the same essay as my common app essay but show the resilience I didn't show?(will the AO look at my previous application and see that I've changed things and hence look like a fake???)


2. Should I write a whole new essay?

I will updating my thread very often so that other people can see my progress. I will be writing CHemistry sat and math level 2 in June, and sat I in October.

Thank you.


Replies to: Reapplying international CC member

  • NerdMom88NerdMom88 Registered User Posts: 772 Member
    It would help to know which universities you applied to for the class of 2021, which ones you're planning to apply to next year, and your current SAT. You have no approximation of your GPA?

    Also, it almost sounds as if you're trying to re-apply to the same universities. Is that the case?

    More information is needed for an accurate assessment.
  • paul2752paul2752 Registered User Posts: 4,588 Senior Member
    If you are re-applying to same schools, you better have better credentials than you first itme applied because admission throuhg re-application is harder.
  • girlgoingtounigirlgoingtouni Registered User Posts: 72 Junior Member
    Bio sat: 690
    Sat I: 1420
    I applied to :
    Harvard Yale Princeton Middlebury f&m Oberlin Stanford Amherst brown Cornell Dartmouth Duke
    And yes I want to reapply to these same schools plus a few others that I haven't yet picked

    I can't give An approximation of GPA @NerdMom88 and @paul2752 but I was rank 2/88 ( a total of 88 pupils in my entire grade)
  • girlgoingtounigirlgoingtouni Registered User Posts: 72 Junior Member
    The story that I wrote in my common app essay would be very strong, I believe, if I just corrected it because it shows how I got to be at rank 2 and how I was an overall well performing student and how I showed how strong I was. But I don't know if the AO will check my previous application and see that I basically wrote the same essay but just edited it and will think I'm being a fake applicant
  • hhjjlalahhjjlala Registered User Posts: 726 Member

    If you wrote your common app essay on how smart you are and how you're #2 in the school and better than everyone else, there is the reason why you got rejected (on top of below average scores). Your common app essay is supposed to reveal your personality, not give reasons why you're the smartest kid in the world.
  • jg18jg18 Registered User Posts: 96 Junior Member
    Also why didn't you apply to safeties? Those schools you listed are ALL incredibly hard to get in and it was unwise to bet on one of them taking you.
  • mamaedefamiliamamaedefamilia Registered User Posts: 2,568 Senior Member
    edited April 16

    Without your GPA, nobody can chance you or point you towards realistic options. You said elsewhere that your school calculates grades according to percentages. That's fine. It should be easy for you to calculate what your GPA is in % (don't include non-academic courses like PE) and get back to us with that number. Then people can help.

    The schools you applied to are reaches for everyone. You will need a more balanced list next time. For example Clark University, Earlham College and Macalester College admit and offer aid to many international students. If you are female and open to a women's college, there are many excellent options.

    I would ask a trusted teacher to look at your Common App essay and make suggestions.

    Finally, regarding schools with openings on May 1, here is a link to an article that explains the process. Not all of the links won't work because the article is not current. But it gives you an idea of what the process is like. Many of these schools will still have aid available, even at this late date. The list is revealed on May 1 and spots are limited so you would need to submit applications quickly.


    The following link gives you an idea of the kinds of colleges that might be on the list (again from last year). You won't find the likes of HYP, but there are a number of Colleges that Change Lives schools (Ohio Wesleyan, Knox, Juniata, Lawrence, Ursinus, for example) that are quite reputable as well as a number of solid public options.


    Best of luck to you.
  • girlgoingtounigirlgoingtouni Registered User Posts: 72 Junior Member
    @mamaedefamilia wow. Thanks so much for your post, however, I just logged in to common app account and nothing was showing. Is it that the account I used last year can no longer be accessed this year? Or is it just my phone that I'm using?
    My GPA should be about 3.6(somewhere there). I tried the link with the full list of the universities still offering places but it wasn't showing anything. So I'll say this: I'm an international in need of 100% aid(my family is not wealthy). Would I find a university there able to offer me 100% financial aid? And also, My I guess I'll be needing my common app account to apply to these universities, what can I do about the common app issue I'm expericing?
  • mamaedefamiliamamaedefamilia Registered User Posts: 2,568 Senior Member
    @girlgoingtouni I have no idea what is causing your common app issues - you should contact them directly.

    The NACAC list won't be available until after May 1. And yes, you will need to have your Common App ready to go because spots may be limited.
  • aunt beaaunt bea Registered User Posts: 8,245 Senior Member
    Why you were rejected:
    1) Reach schools for students with even perfect scores
    2) International candidate
    3) in need of FULL aid
    4) Essay

    Do not apply to the same universities; you will be rejected again (they already have your information and nothing has changed).

    Apply to the universities that will provide near to full aid; unfortunately those are very far and few between.

    Change up that essay to talk about your world; NOT your inability to handle stress, nor, being better than others (that's just obnoxious).
  • rnl2691rnl2691 Registered User Posts: 21 New Member
    I wonder if there are cultural differences at work here with regards to your essay. It sounds crazy when I think about it, but Americans admire resiliency, even though of course most people do better when whatever difficulties they are facing are removed. Also, Americans want you to have high scores, but we don't want to hear you talk about how smart you are. It makes no sense, but I would encourage you to try to find a teacher in your country who is familiar with some of our quirks. I also would second thinking about both Earlham and Macalester. I've had kids at both schools, and both schools seem very interested in attracting and supporting international students. Can I ask what you are interested in studying? What type of environment would you prefer to be in? What was it about the schools that you applied to that drew you to them?
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 31,409 Senior Member
    You must have enough money to pay for your plane tickets, health insurance, and books. Universities will not force those costs.
    Next, what part of the world are you from?
    Finally, send me your commonapp essay.
  • girlgoingtounigirlgoingtouni Registered User Posts: 72 Junior Member
    @MYOS1634 , I can't even afford the plane ticket itself, my family is poor, my single mother receives only $800 per month. Is it worth it to still apply to these universities that will be published on May 1 then? If I can't afford? And I'm from sub-Saharan Africa
  • girlgoingtounigirlgoingtouni Registered User Posts: 72 Junior Member
    @rnl2691 , I want to study neuroscience, or molecular biology, or any biological course that a university can offer or astrophysics. I applied to these universities because they have good reviews, good student-faculty ratios, and very good majors, I wide variety to pick from.
  • MYOS1634MYOS1634 Registered User Posts: 31,409 Senior Member
    edited April 27
    Then, your best chances are to wait a year and take a gap year.
    None of the universities on the May list will have sufficient financial aid for you.
    Can you save enough to register for the SAT (subjects) in June?
    Do you have 'best subjects" (in which you're excellent)?
    Is your school system French-patterned or British-patterned?

    Very few kids from subsaharan Africa have scores like yours so you're certainly a top performer in your country, but everything else will come into play (essays, recommendations etc).
    @ZAprez may be able to cheer you up a bit.
    Don't give up. We'll figure something out.

    @ readers on this thread: checked the commonapp essay. It wasn't about how she's smarter than everyone else. It tried to fulfill the American request of "overcoming odds" but since it's a difficult task when you don't know the cultural parameters it didn't work as well as it could have. But it wasn't a sort of "in praise of my exceptional self" as the short description might have sounded to some.
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