Any Hope???

<p>I know this is a longshot......but I'm going to apply anyways because I quality for the fee-waiver.....here goes, and try not to wince</p>

<p>GPA is 3.5
class rank is 80/550
SAT I: 1300 V 660 M 640....I am planning to retake in January
SAT II: 590 Math IC(retook Level 1 today)....630 Writing (retook today).....800 Spanish.....and took US History today as well, possibly a 750 I estimate</p>

<p>ECs: </p>

<p>Member of JSA 11th and 12th grade....Vice-President this year
Racquet Sports Club
California Scholarship Federation</p>

<p>Summer Activities:</p>

<p>Volunteering at hospital for three summers, with over 225 hours total</p>

<p>Work Experience:
I have worked at Target for the past six months, averaging 25 hours a week during school and 40 during the summer</p>

<p>I am a 1st generation American......both of my parents moved here from Mexico and I will also be a 1st generation college student. It seems they are interested in my heritage as I have recieved letters from the Hispanic Student Union, but I'm not sure if that means anything or if it's just a mailing list.....</p>

<p>I plan to major in Government and shall get a letter from my ap government teacher, who also taught me world history in 10th grade.....and another letter from my 1st term english teacher from last year, who was a professor at Harvard and Berkeley, among other places......</p>

<p>Thanks everyone.....</p>

<p>Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.</p>

<p>I do not give odds because I don't have a crystal ball. I can say, however, that you have a chance at Harvard. This particularly is true if you are low income. Many of the top colleges, including Harvard, are now trying to reach out to low income, first generation college students. </p>

<p>While your scores are lower than Harvard's average, that's understandable because you did not have the advantage of having highly educated, English speaking parents who started prepping you for Harvard when you were in preschool. There's a good chance that your achievements reflect more intelligence and a stronger work ethic than exists in some students from privileged backgrounds who got higher grades and scores.</p>

<p>I suggest that you make sure to also apply to other colleges that are in the top 25 as rated by US News. Do not apply to only one reach school.Whether or not you get into Harvard, I think that you have what it takes to get into another top 25 university. Best of luck!</p>

<p>No way, Jose.</p>

<p>Ouch!!!!!!!</p>

<p>Northstarmom~</p>

<p>I'm just curious, how does Harvard know that you are low-income? They don't ask for any of that information on the application. </p>

<p>Also, is it ok to send in financial aid stuff now?...or do we have to wait until we are accepted?</p>

<p>What I think would be a good system of deciding whether or not you should apply to a school is, consider how much money you would have to spend on the app ($65 normally, but you're free). Then add 10 x # of hours needed to prepare an app.</p>

<p>Then ballpark what you think your odds of getting in are. </p>

<p>Suppose you think your odds are 1%, and it takes you 4 hours to prepare an app. This is about $40 worth of labor. Would you pay $4,000 for a guaranteed acceptance to Harvard?</p>

<p>If so, apply. If not, don't. Of course, this is a pretty illogical method that doesn't count about a hundred other factors, but I asked myself this before I chose every college I applied to, and I guess it would be an even more important question for low-income applicants to consider.</p>

<p>Colleges can figure out your income by:</p>

<ol>
<li>whether or not you apply for financial aid and what your financial aid application says </li>
</ol>

<p>I would bet that even colleges that accept students on a need-blind basis might ask financial aid to let them know when very low income students apply. Many such colleges, including Harvard, are specifically trying to recruit qualified low income students. Admissions decisions still are being made when financial aid info is filed.</p>

<ol>
<li>What school you go to. The GCs at schools submit a "school profile" with students' applications. The info includes % of students who are college-bound, % who are on free lunches, #s of students going into the military, dropping out of h.s. etc. Schools with high numbers of dropouts and military-bound students usually are low income. </li>
</ol>

<p>If a poor student goes to an expensive prep school, more than likely the GC recommendation will include the info that the student is low income and is on a scholarship.</p>

<ol>
<li><p>Your address: It is easy for colleges to use zip code information to get an idea about one's income level. That's info available on-line through census records. Depending on where one lives, when the school sees the name of your or town, they may be able to have a very good idea about your income level. For instance, Flint, Michigan and East St. Louis are very poor cities. </p></li>
<li><p>Your parents' jobs and education. </p></li>
<li><p>ECs. For example, usually people using Boys and Girls Clubs are low income. People on ski and golf teams or whose hobbies are yachting or horseback riding or who participate in expensive summer programs are usually high middle income to wealthy.</p></li>
<li><p>Essay. (Eg. student writes about how they are working a job to help their family).</p></li>
<li><p>GC and other recommendations</p></li>
<li><p>The interviewer. Alumni interviewers, since they know the student's hometown, are particularly able to pick up on students' income levels.</p></li>
</ol>