right arrow
Examples: Monday, today, last week, Mar 26, 3/26/04

Ivy League students- how do YOU think you got in?

LampoLampo 24 replies28 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
I want to know what YOUR story was, be as specific as possible. I know that many people have no idea how they got in because they did not expect it, and the decision is ultimately up to the admissions officers. But I want to know- what extracurriculars did you pursue? What was your "niche" and how did you progress through it? What was your journey? What were some of the challenges you faced?
Thank you
66 replies
· Reply · Share
«134

Replies to: Ivy League students- how do YOU think you got in?

  • austinmshauriaustinmshauri 8930 replies334 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Other people's stories are interesting, but they aren't a formula that you can follow to get accepted to an Ivy. Pursue your own interests and make sure your application shows who you are. Then find the colleges that are fits for you and apply there.
    · Reply · Share
  • LampoLampo 24 replies28 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    I know it's not formulaic, but sometime's when identifying an interest to pursue during high school, it's had to know even where to begin. Personally, reading how other people take their interest to the highest of heights serve as sort of an example for me, not a guiding formula.
    · Reply · Share
  • Community2605Community2605 138 replies5 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    My son - Yale '19

    Long story of his admissions process here:
    http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/admissions-hindsight-lessons-learned/1790192-elite-school-admissions-a-first-time-parents-stumble-through-the-game-with-no-playbook-p1.html

    Main tidbits - white, middle-class male, public school, small town in the Midwest

    Education and test scores - IB diploma, all-A's, 3rd in the class, 2300 SAT, 35 ACT, glowing recommendations

    EC's - I think this is where he stood out. His EC's were many and varied. Sports, academic competitions, chess, tons and tons of music. Leadership experience was a little light.



    · Reply · Share
  • PoliticsrulePoliticsrule 25 replies2 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @HyberTurbo I completely agree!
    · Reply · Share
  • PoliticsrulePoliticsrule 25 replies2 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @HyperTurbo I completely agree!
    · Reply · Share
  • doorrealthedoorrealthe 1137 replies26 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    I am a recent high school graduate who will be attending Dartmouth this fall. I am from a highly competitive Northeast school that sends approximately 30-50 students every year to Ivies or Ivy equivalents (Stanford, MIT, etc). I applied to all 8 Ivies. Got accepted by Dartmouth, transfer option from Cornell, wait listed at Harvard, Yale, Columbia, rejected from Brown, Princeton, and Penn (deferred ED and then rejected from Wharton).

    Completely unhooked, below a 3.9 UW GPA, 2300 SAT, 800 Math II, 670 Lit. I think I got in because my ECs showed I was passionate about an academic field. Having that "spike" helps a great deal. You want to be an ace at one trade instead of a jack of all trades.
    · Reply · Share
  • sherpasherpa 4730 replies93 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Son's profile:

    Excellent grades - 4.0 UW with extremely rigorous course load (17 AP's). Valedictorian

    Strong test scores - 35 ACT, 780, 790, 800 ST.

    Three primary ECs - nationally recognized community service, music (classical guitar), and competitive fencing.

    Overall he was a strong applicant, but what sealed the deal was his high national ranking in fencing. He was widely recruited and chose Princeton.
    · Reply · Share
  • aoeuidhtnsaoeuidhtns 419 replies3 threadsRegistered User Member
    Graduated Wharton a few years ago. Class rank 3/500 from a public school; 99th percentile SAT; involved in several ECs with leadership and awards... but half the applicant pool sounds like that. I think I got in based on my quirky Why Penn essay that ended with the f-word.
    · Reply · Share
  • LampoLampo 24 replies28 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    edited September 2017
    Thanks all for your answers!
    edited September 2017
    · Reply · Share
  • Emsmom1Emsmom1 1004 replies77 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    Daughter- recruited athlete.
    4.11 weighted/32 ACT very few ECs except her sport. We have no illusions- she would not have been accepted if not for her sport.
    · Reply · Share
  • justliviglifejustliviglife 234 replies14 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @Emsmom1 If your daughter had not been a recruited athlete, but had good ECs in another world, but with the same stats, I'm confident she definitely would have has a chance.

    I'm someone who gets very annoyed when athletes get recruited to ivies with extremely low grades and scores, but your daughter deserves to be there! She made the grades, made the scores, and was very passionate about something (sport).

    Congrats to her on her success!
    · Reply · Share
  • justliviglifejustliviglife 234 replies14 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    @katliamom Haha...not me, but my friend's story is "grandpa is a billionaire"
    · Reply · Share
  • Emsmom1Emsmom1 1004 replies77 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    @justliviglife Thank you. She does love her school and is doing ok. We are very grateful she has been given this opportunity!
    · Reply · Share
  • compmomcompmom 10763 replies76 threadsRegistered User Senior Member
    My kid did not think about college admissions during high school and basically did what she wanted. She ended up with a major interest in a performing art and spent more time on that than academics. She didn't even look at the email from admissions because she wasn't thinking it was even possible that she got in. She didn't care either. But she had some great years at an Ivy and is glad she attended.
    · Reply · Share
  • IB_Xavier_2017IB_Xavier_2017 43 replies5 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    I think I got in through hard work and perseverance, not listening to all the negative comments about how hard is to get accepted, and keeping in mind that my goal was to get admitted to a quality school that would best help me achieve my goals and ambitions in life. I set my sights high, but cast my net as far as possible.
    · Reply · Share
  • thebetterhawkeyethebetterhawkeye 104 replies7 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    One day I was waiting for a program to run at work and came up with a list of the 5 categories of Penn students:

    Athletes: recruited for athletics, obviously. They tend to look scared and as if they don't belong.
    Legacies/other very rich kids: You know who they are by talking to them for a second. The difference between them and the athletes is that they're thoroughly convinced they got in on merit.
    Workhorses: Above average intelligence, surely, but they studied for several hours a night every night to get to where they wanted.
    Do-it-alls: President of every club, three-sport athlete, 4.0 unweighted GPA, etc. They work hard but for the wrong reasons.
    "Feral geniuses": Natural phenoms at a small number of things. This is me and most of my friends, and this title came up at a party where I said the only thing I'm good at is writing and the two friends I was talking to said that's why I got in; most kids can't write to save their lives.

    Basically I think the Ivies are looking for two categories of people: people who will get rich and give a lot of money back to the school as thanks, and people who will get famous and bring recognition to the school, thus encouraging more applicants.

    For me in particular, I can trace it to a few things. I was from a public school in Wisconsin that sends a few kids to Ivies every year, and I was the 3rd in a row to apply and get in ED to Penn. They want to set up a trend so more kids apply. Second, my essays showed off that I can really freakin' write. They were outside the box but they worked; I wrote about comic books in the Common App, I name-dropped punk rockers with Ph.Ds in my Penn supplement, and overall it showed who I was. Third, I had extraordinary rec letters: my English teacher for whom I wrote an essay on War & Peace, my APUSH teacher who I would eat lunch and talk about feminism with, and a University of Wisconsin professor who I've been doing research with since I was 14. Fourth, that aforementioned research: I'm second author on a paper pending publication already.

    Yeah, I also had the GPA and test scores to "fit in", but it wouldn't have made me stand out like my essays, letters, and research.
    · Reply · Share
  • studentathlete18studentathlete18 216 replies21 threadsRegistered User Junior Member
    Case studies of kids from my school who got in:
    1. National History Fair Winner/two sport athlete (Harvard) (Rejected from Princeton early)
    2. two sport athlete/did it all (Harvard Early)
    3. Did it all. I mean did everything and was President of everything. Coke Scholar. National Merit Finalist (Rejected Yale SCEA, Accepted to Harvard)
    · Reply · Share
This discussion has been closed.

Recent Activity