Artistic student with Weak ECs at top colleges?

<p>Asian-American Female
Location: California
College Class Year: 2015 (Fall 2011 freshman term)
High School: Public, sends some grads to top schools
Will apply for financial aid: Yes</p>

<p>GPA - Unweighted: 3.6-3.8 (it varies)
GPA - Weighted: Unsure; I took 2 AP classes last year, 4 this year, and got 1-3 Bs and 3-5 As, depending on the semester; usually 1 B, 5 As
(Note: my HS class was the last one to have unweighted GPAs)
Class Rank: top 20% (10% if weighted)
Class Size: 500-600</p>

<p>APs:
Sophomore - AP Euro (4), AP Chem (3)
Junior - <em>Predicted</em> APUSH (3-4), APES (3-4), AP Calc AB (2-3) AP English (4-5)
**Will update this later*
Senior - will take AP Art History, AP Studio Art 2-D Design, AP Statistics, AP English, and AP Gov/Econ</p>

<p>Notes on classes:
- I jumped from CP Biology freshman year to AP Chem
- I jumped from geometry to pre-calc by taking a community college course (see below)
- I'm jumping from Art Foundations (beginning art class) to AP 2-D Design next year</p>

<p>SAT I Math: 770
SAT I Critical Reading: 660
SAT I Writing: 720 (8e)
May try ACT</p>

<p>SAT II Literature: 670
SAT II History: 740</p>

<p>Weak ECs:
Invisible Children (boardmember: Publicity Team) - (11th, 12th)
Ecology Club - (11th, 12th)
**When they ask for 'hours per week' on common app, does attending the club--half an hour every week--count, or are they looking for volunteer stuff?*
Temporary Paid Job for two weeks (Should I even bother putting this?) - (11th)
California Scholarship Federation - Planning on Lifetime member by 12th</p>

<p>Honors and Awards:
Drama Department - Performer of the Year (9th)
National Honor Society Essay Contest - 1st place (10th)
Schoolwide Spelling Bee - 1st place (11th)
Rotary Club Essay Contest (Club Level) - 1st place (11th)</p>

<p>College Summer programs: Intermediate Algebra (Algebra II) at local community college (summer between 9th and 10th grade)</p>

<p>Languages: Spanish (three years in school), fluent in Cantonese (outside of school)</p>

<p>**No athletics, no volunteer (or too little to put on app)*</p>

<p>Hearing-Impaired (Moderate, lifelong condition; I need hearing aids on both ears but can still communicate without them), plan on writing a small part of essay on it
**Will colleges discriminate against me for this (they're not supposed to but they might, subtly), use it as a special case and judge in my favor for this, or will it make no difference unless I go in-depth about it on my essay?*</p>

<p>Recommendations: I can expect great recommendations from my English teacher and past hearing aid itinerant, plus average-good ones from my History teacher and current itinerant (itinerants visit me every other week and pull me out of class for a small amount of time to discuss college/study vocabulary/work on speech)</p>

<p>Prospective Majors: Art History, Psychology, Graphic Design, English, or Undeclared</p>

<p>Dream Schools:
Pomona College
**If I plan on applying for financial aid and will be needing it, should I still apply ED? They claim to meet 100% need.*
UC Berkeley
UCLA *In-state for CA</p>

<p>Match:
Wellesley (reach but not dream school; it's a free app, though, even if I need to send SAT scores, etc. to them)
Claremont McKenna (possible reach)
Pitzer
UC San Diego</p>

<p>Safety:
UC Irvine</p>

<p>**For Pomona and other colleges where I can, I will send them supplements of my design work.*</p>

<p>Interview (Pitzer, CMC, Pomona): I know a good amount about those schools, and while I am an introvert, I feel that I can show myself well at an interview. Later this summer.</p>

<p>Essays: Let's assume they're good. I plan on writing my common app essay on something about art.</p>

<p>Thank you so much if you read through all of that!
I'll answer any questions anyone has for me too, and may try to chance back though I'm admittedly not very good at that kind of stuff.</p>

<p>Here's what I can tell you, Wellesly is strong for Art, CMC is not but is strong in psych and reasonably strong in English/writing. Both CMC and Pamona guarantee to meet need. Need is determined by FAFSA and CSS so there can be a gap between demonstrated need and what you and your parents feel is your actual need. You can be pretty confident that what they determine your need to be will be met without loans but will very likely include work/study. When they ask about time spent on EC's I think they mean time spent period.</p>

<p>Thanks for your response, especially with regards to the financial question. =) Yeah, I'm partially going to decide my major based on the colleges I attend, so that helped too; CMC's got a rep for the social sciences and humanities and Pitzer (another 5C) seems to be artsy.</p>

<p>IDEA: If you got a performance award from the drama department, doesn't that mean you're involved in theater? You could list that on your app.</p>

<p>Thank you for your reply as well; I'm not involved in theater, though. In 9th grade, I took drama as a class to fulfill my fine arts requirement, but even though the class was amazing, I couldn't continue with theater due to class space restrictions the following year. (I eventually ditched drama for art; I regret not taking an afterschool sport instead of P.E. so I could've taken both, but bleh.)</p>

<p>You seem to be very unique, what with your hearing problems, your artistic interests, your awards... however, you also have weak SAT scores and a somewhat-weak GPA. I think that your dream schools are incredibly difficult to get into and you might not get into most of them, while for your matches, I think you have a good chance to get in. Pomona has an extremely low admission rate in particular. You should def apply ED.</p>