Any Suggestions for LACs and Unis I could get into?


  • International student
  • Public high school
  • Gender/Race/Ethnicity (optional): Male, Black (West African)
  • Other special factors: First generation, Took gap year

Intended Major(s)
Computer Science and Economics (very certain).

GPA, Rank, and Test Scores

  • Unweighted HS GPA: 3.59
  • Weighted HS GPA : N/A
  • College GPA : N/A
  • Class Rank: N/A out of 967
  • ACT/SAT Scores
    SAT - 1590
    ACT - 33

WAEC National Exam with 3 Cs

Overall winner in international high school hackathon.
2nd runner up in national hackathon.

During high school:

  • On-campus job
  • remote web development internship
  • volunteer at school library
  • debate club(member)
  • robotics club(member)
  • religious organization(with leadership position)
  • volunteered to advocate child literacy in final year.
  • Family responsibilities.

Post high school:

  • 3-month Internship at start-up.
  • Weather-monitoring project since high school graduation.
  • A plethora of online courses.

Essays and counselor LOR include explanation for low GPA.
(Not a very exceptional explanation. Things were somewhat within my control. I just got distracted doing what I felt was the morally right thing for me to do).
Essay also explains my long-term motivations well.

Cost Constraints / Budget

  • Low-income home
  • Virtually no ability to pay


  • Safety *(certain admission and affordability): None
  • Likely (would be possible, but very unlikely or surprising, for it not to admit or be affordable): None
  • Match: None
  • Reach: Harvard, Yale, Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Duke, Trinity College, Centre College, Denison, UW-Madison, Franklin & Marshall, St Olaf.

Look into Grinnell.

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As far as I know, five colleges are need-blind admissions and need-blind for full aid in the US. Harvard, Yale, MIT, Princeton, and Amherst. They are also five of the most difficult colleges to get into.

As a suggestion, you may want to research HBCU, historically black colleges, and universities. Look in the this would allow you to do one application for 60 of the colleges. The schools range in selectivity, size, and location. Here is a link to rankings for them would be reaches, matches, and safeties for you from this group. I hope you find this information helpful and good luck.


OP: I think that the responses in this thread are excellent with respect to your question.

I would like to suggest a minor edit of your profile:

Instead of writing: “A plethora of online courses.” Consider: “Completed several online courses.” Or: "Completed several online courses [and then list the courses].

The reason for changing “a plethora of online courses” is that this makes the courses appear to be an insignificant after-thought when your goal should be to present these courses as an accomplishment.

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Thank you very much.

Thanks a lot.
I am unable to edit the original post, but I’ll keep this advice in mind when submitting my college applications.

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Thanks a lot.
Could you elaborate on why they would be a match for me?

Grinnell offers an excellent computer science department, is exceptionally well-funded with respect to financial aid, and enrolls a lot of international students. For the study of economics, Grinnell would be fair.


Sure. They’re on my list now.
Thanks a lot.

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Dickinson College is a likely school for you to consider. Computer science and huge emphasis on international students and creating a global community. Your stats should earn you scholarship money or decent financial aid.

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