Asian male, chance me for Williams and OOS UCLA?

**Demographics: ** Asian, male, bisexual, Michigan, US citizen, competitive public school, no legacy

**Intended Major: ** Sociology

**Stats: ** 3.89UW, 4.44W, school doesn’t officially rank but for some reason gives UW percentiles putting me in the top 25%, 1550 SAT, 5s on AP Gov, Micro, Macro, 4 on AP CSA, 3 in Seminar, 4 semester Bs junior year (in STEM APs)

**Coursework: ** 16 APs, only ones I haven’t taken at my school are AP Environmental Science, Physics E&M, Calc BC, language APs

**Extracurriculars: ** Founded non-profit encouraging teen political involvement, wrote two bills with the non-profit that were introduced in the state House and Senate, interned for state senator, Politics Club president, secretary for Student Mental Health Awareness Club, worked for national polling firm, Varsity tennis, successful political blog, volunteered for multiple local candidates

**Awards: ** Commended award for international essay competition (politics category), article published in popular newspaper, National Merit Semifinalist (predicted), AP Scholar with Distinction, AP Capstone Diploma (predicted)

**Essays: ** From AP Lang/Seminar teacher and AP CSA teacher, they have reputations for writing solid letters, essays should be solid

**Cost Restraints: ** Should be none, parents can afford to pay mostl

Congratulations on your academic success and EC awards. I will only comment on UCLA which will be a Reach school.

What are your 3 UC GPA’s? GPA Calculator for the University of California – RogerHub

UCLA is test blind so your excellent SAT score will not be considered. UCLA is also race/ethnicity blind.

Hopefully you have a balanced college list including some safeties.

Below is the 2021 UC admit rates which are not major specific nor based on Residency using the Capped Weighted UC GPA calculation.

Campus 4.20+ 3.80-4.19 3.40-3.79 3.00-3.39
Los Angeles 29% 6% 1% 0%

Best of luck.

Since UCLA is one of your asks, I suggest computing your GPA here and posting the three results – UW, Capped Weighted and Uncapped Weighted. UC GPA’s will be a major factor.

As OOS, note that the only courses you should count as “honors” are AP, IB or official “duel enrollment college courses” on your high school transcript. Do not count any other courses your school considers weighted like honors, accelerated, advanced, gifted, etc. Also, note they only want your sophomore and junior year classes – don’t count Freshman year.

My UC GPAs are 3.83 UW, 4.43 W, 4.17 weighted and capped. I’d like to add that I’m fairly sure I can get straight As first semester senior year. How do these stats add up?

My UC GPAs are 3.83 UW, 4.43 W, 4.17 weighted and capped according to that website.

On my phone, replied to myself on accident lol. My UC GPAs are 3.83 UW, 4.43 W, 4.17 weighted and capped according to that website.

Your senior year grades, even just first semester, will not be used for the UC GPA.

Here is a profile of the UCLA Class from 3 years ago – it’s the most recent year I have seen where the specifically broke out Admit GPA’s by OOS applicants. Note they still used standardized test scores as part of admission then. They are now test blind and will not look at your SAT score. Most likely with no standardized test scores and even more applicants each year, there has probably been upward pressure on the admit GPA’s. Even 3 years ago the bottom quartile (i.e. the bottom 25% of admits) has an average UW UC GPA off 3.93 and an uncapped UC GPA of 4.46. So you’re below the 25% level, if it were steady or higher than 3 years ago.

I wouldn’t let that discourage you – UCLA looks at more than just grades and it seems like you have some great other aspects of your application, and your grades aren’t that far outside the range. If it’s one of your top choices, you should definitely apply. Just set your expectation that it’s a reach.

Good luck.

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Here is the 2021 Freshman profile but as noted by @citivas, that was the last year that OOS applicant GPA’s were specifically listed. If you compare your Capped weighted UC GPA to the chart I posted, the admit rate range is 6%. Since the UC’s have gone test blind, below a 4.2 Capped weighted UC GPA makes you less competitive however GPA is still only 1 out of 13 areas of criteria used in their application review. Your EC’s and awards show your passion and you have very high HS course rigor. Spend time on your activities/awards section on the UC application along with your PIQ’s to help make you standout from the rest of the competitive applicants. You definitely have a chance at admission but with around 150,000 applicants last year, odds are not in anyone’s favor.

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Take a look at section C7 on the Williams Common data set. They’re upfront about exactly what’s important to them.


Both schools are highly rejective so odds are slim. With the excerpt from Williams’ CDS it seems that your class rank might hurt you if it really is only in the top 25% (vs, top 10% or higher). And since your overall unweighted GPA is a 3.89 but you had 4 Bs junior year, that isn’t going to be the most helpful thing. But you’ve got some really interesting extracurriculars and could definitely demonstrate how you would contribute to the school community if accepted, and I would emphasize that point in your essays. And you have strong test scores.
So, I would not be shocked if you were accepted, but it is a long shot.

(I am one of those who finds interesting extracurriculars and community involvement more compelling than grades and standardized tests, as once your GPA and test scores show you can handle the work, it’s more about what makes you unique and how you can bring that individuality to the campus. I am not, however, an admissions officer, so take my bias for what it’s worth.)

Make sure you have a balanced college list including schools where you would be happy to attend are are virtually certain are affordable and will grant you admission. You probably (hopefully) already have it on your list, but take a good, strong look at Michigan State as a school that would meet the above parameters. Being in the state capital is a big plus for someone with your interests, the school rates a 4/5 on the Campus Pride index (for details on specific areas, see source), and suspect you’d receive an invite to the Honors College.

If you need any suggestions as you craft a balanced list of schools to apply to, just let us know.

Based upon your suggested preferences, also consider Vassar and Pitzer for your greater college list.

Your stats are solid. But as you probably already know, getting into the highest tier colleges will require near perfect GPA and test scores plus something special. Being in top 25% is great, but you’ll be competing against valedictorians with similar ECs/test scores.

Why not U Michigan?

I’m also applying to UMich and would be happy to go there.

The thing about the 25% is that it’s not listed anywhere but our high school’s profile. It just gives percentiles based on unweighted GPAs (e.g. 10% is X GPA, 15% is Y GPA), so I was wondering if my high rigor, test scores, ECs, and awards could make up for it.

The top colleges will be familiar with your school and grading system. High Schools have made an art of obscuring the class rank. But there are ways they can figure your estimated rank 1) Prior years and current year distributions from your HS 2) Counselor letter of recc and 3) Informal interactions with your HS guidance office.

Bottom line is that: the colleges know who the top students are from each high school, even those who don’t rank. But don’t worry top 25% is nothing to sneeze at. Just set your sights accordingly. Shooting for Harvard Princeton and Yale seem unlikely with a rank in the top 25% (unless you’re a recruited athlete or kid of a big donor).