Applying for class of 2026

Hi! I am starting to apply to colleges and I have no idea what schools I will get into or should try for. I have a 3.79 UW/4.2 W GPA 1380 SAT, Not many EC’s but ride horses 10+ years so that takes up most my time haha! I like schools like syracuse, wake forest, some of the UC’s(out of state though), BU, Wisconsin, Elon, UGA, Clemson. Can someone help with what schools would be target, reach, safety? I am just not getting much help from my GC and yeah.

  • Live in VT, “Inner-city” school
  • Probably want to apply for biology or some sort of science
  • 3 AP’s (Their are only like 5 or 6 at my school) all honors other than that and also took 2 classes at UVM.
  • 50ish hours volunteering in my town, horseback ride, ski team, play an instrument, have had 5 jobs work 2 right now 24 hours a week. 3 clubs.
  • Budget maybe less than 60k ish?

The California UC’s will be approximately $65K/year not including incidentals and transportation costs. They are also test blind and use a specific calculation for their GPA. 10-11th grades for the a-g course requirements including 1 year of a Visual Performing arts course.

Here is the calculator: GPA Calculator for the University of California – RogerHub

Weighted classes for the UC GPA calculator are only AP/IB or UC transferable CC/DE courses. School designated Honors courses are not weighted for OOS applicants.

Depending upon which UC’s and specific major you are targeting, they could be either Reaches or Matches if they affordable. UC’s offer little to no merit or need-based aid to OOS applicants.

What is your career goal as a possible Biology/Science major? Graduate/Professional school? If so, then you want to keep undergrad costs and student debt low.

That’s an eclectic group of schools. So a couple things:

  1. bio - not a “high paying” major…is med school in your future? If so, think of the long term costs.

  2. As @Gumbymom said, the UCs won’t look at tests and likely won’t give you aid. I don’t see the UCs as a fit - although maybe Santa Cruz or Davis. But their app is a lot of work (not on Common App) and monetarily it’s not right. An Oregon or Arizona might be a better substitute if you want to be out West.

Looking at your list -

Syracuse a match. Wake a reach. BU - a reach - if and only if it’s your top choice and you can afford it (see the NPC), you’d need to apply ED. Personally I’m not an ED fan.

Wisconsin likely, UGA not, Clemson 50/50. Elon a match/likely.

If you are looking for “less expensive” look at Ohio U, WVU, UVM, U of SC, U of Alabama, Pitt and Purdue. In regards to you ride horses, here’s an article. Not mentioned is Miami of Ohio - another one to look at - during our tour, all they talked about was the stables and riding club and how from beginner to advance it’s welcoming - and it’d come in well under budget. I would equivalate Miami (Ohio) to be like Elon…sort of in the middle of nowhere (but 45 mins to a city, just like Elon)…not much in town…it’s just a lot larger (like Syracuse size). So I’d definitely tell you to look there as well.

So your list is ok - but could use a little oomph - somewhere you know you’ll 100% get in - like Miami. As you have rural (Elon) and city-ish (Syracuse) and uber city (BU), not sure exactly what you seek. Good luck.

11 Best Equestrian Colleges | Farm House Tack

I want to be a genetic counselor so I think you have to go to school after college. My top choice UC is UCSB but yeah I don’t know if I could get in

I think I want to apply to Wake ED. but if I dont get in ED will they put me in RD? I also want to apply to CU Boulder, Villanova, NC State, Michigan State, UMich, UVM, Indiana maybe?, UT Austin… Do I have a chance at those?

In the previous note to @Gumbymom you mention UCSB is your top choice so why would you apply ED to Wake when it is binding?

I am not sure about WF but some schools will defer you to RD or reject you. If they reject you, you weren’t getting in RD anyway.

You have a chance at these you list but unlikely at Michigan and Austin (OOS)…Nova would be tough too - but if you have slots left to apply on Common App, why not? UT Austin is on a different app so it’s a bit more work and OOS is a tough admit.

With this list, you will have several opportunities - especially Boulder, UVM, IU, and Michigan State.

You had other schools on your original post too. What happened to them ?

Btw it’s ok to get turned down somewhere. If you don’t you didn’t step up enough of looking for pedigree.
Good luck.

For UCSB and all the UC’s, they only use 10-11th grades for their UC GPA calculation. 3 UC GPA’s are considered: Unweighted, Capped weighted (8 semester cap on weighted classes being AP/IB and UC transferable DE/CC courses taken 10-11th for OOS applicants) and Fully weighted (unlimited semesters of weighted classes).

Calculator is here and you need to meet all the a-g course requirements including a year of a Visual/Performing arts course/courses.

Some UCSB admission data below. College of Letters and Sciences does not admit by major. Engineering College admits by major. If you are looking at a major like Biology, you are admitted as a Pre-Biology major and have to successfully complete the pre-req courses with specific grades to declare the major.

2020 Freshman admit rates for UC GPA of 3.40-3.79 capped weighted and not major specific:
UCSB: 9%

2020 Freshman admit rates for UC GPA of 3.80-4.19 capped weighted and not major specific:
UCSB: 40%

2020 Freshman admit rates for UC GPA of 4.20 or above capped weighted and not major specific:
UCSB: 81%

2021 admission:
Overall acceptance rate for UCSB: 29.2%
OOS acceptance rate for UCSB: 36.3%

If graduate school is a possibility, spending $260 for 4 years at a UC does not make sense unless you have an unlimited budget for both Undergrad and Grad school.

Hi - I am a freshman at Umich I had the same SAT score. I did have straight A’s. If you can bulk up your EC’s, dig deep. I also recommend having your principal reach out to your regional admissions person if you really want to go. Also apply to as many schools as possible like Kinesiology and LSA, you never know. It could be another weird year. UGA, Wisco, Elon, Cuse, and BU should be a lock. I didn’t apply anywhere on the West Coast so I can’t help you, but you may want to look at the Florida schools, they are really inexpensive out of state and if you have grandparents that live there you can get in-state tutition. Good Luck!