Chance me? (my mom keeps telling Oberlin is perfect for me)

Ethnicity: White
Residency: NJ
High school: Bergen County Academies (magnet school, test to get in a la college)
Gender: Male</p>

Honors everything, really. Taking Calculus this year. My school limits your APs to two a year, so only APs are
AP Physics B
AP Computer Science AB
GPA: 3.78
Rank: Unranked, but top percentile
SAT: 1990 (650 Writing, 660 Math, 680 Reading). Expecting math to go up like whoa on retake, and I'm getting new scores in 12 hours so I'll edit this then.
SAT2: Physics - 700, Literature - 700</p>

Varsity Winter and Spring Track - Three years
Two medals at division level for hurdles
Competitive at State level
Choir (elected Choir Publicist this year) - 4 years
Chamber Choir - 1 year
All-County Choir - 2 years, Tenor II
All-Region Choir - 2 years, Tenor II (ranked #4 in region)
All-State Choir - 1 year, Bass I
Marching band (unofficial section leader, deemed by director) - 3 years
Jazz band - Four years
five-piece school male a cappella group - 2 years, main organizer
Church choir, bell choir, part of Youth Group - four years</p>

<p>Community Service:
Week in Pass Christian, Mississippy for Katrnia relief
Week in West Virginia for community improvement
Various activites with church (raking leaves, walking for food, little things)</p>

National Merit Scholarship Semifinalist
Dean's List a whole lot
Hurdles medals at Division level, third and fourth place in 110M Hurdles and 400M Hurdles respectively</p>

Dairy Queen counter employee - two years
local Mexican resturant delivary boy - now
Summer Recreation camp counseler - One summer
Computer Tutor for the elderly at senior citizen centers - One summer</p>

<p>There ya go. My essay is also about people in my school who have forgotten how to think (a lot of kids vomit out facts onto a test without ever thinking) and how I look for intellectual challenges, which seems to fit the Oberlin bill 100%.</p>

<p>I have the legacy as well, my mom went to the conservatory at Oberlin and really recommended me for Oberlin. </p>

<p>Also, if I applied for financial aid, would it really affect my chances?</p>

<p>"My essay is also about people in my school who have forgotten how to think (a lot of kids vomit out facts onto a test without ever thinking) and how I look for intellectual challenges..."</p>

<p>Make sure you don't cut others down to make yourself look superior as that would not go over well.</p>

<p>Absolutely, that's my chief fear with the essay and has been with the beginning. I've worded it carefully and intend to have others read it quite a bit. Those who have read the semi-rough draft (including my English teacher) say it sounds good and doesn't come off as arrogant.</p>

<p>If I were you, I'd find a way to express your own love of learning, relative to what you like to do...without even mentioning what others are about. I can't see how building your essay as described originally could NOT sound arrogant and condescending to others with different strategies for studying than you, but of course I'm not looking at your essay. I'd be so much more comfortable if you coudl describe yourself in terms of you, your learning style, what turns you on in classes, what you find satisfying, how you employ critifcal thinking..than hear you compare yourself to others in a way that serves you well like that. Remember, NJ is a more competitive culture than a lot of places, and I'm not even trusting your teacher there who said the essay didn't sound arrogant. In strucutre it sounds arrogant. </p>

<p>Can you get your points across about yourself, without mentioning others at all? Why not try a version that way and see if YOU are more comfortable submitting it in that new form.</p>

<p>I've been thinking along similar lines. My essay might go more along the lines of describing how when I came into high school, I didn't really care about issues, but now I do, and seek different kinds of challenges and conversion (with examples), and how my love off philosophy came about and whatnot. The people who don't know how to think will be mentioned, but not much more.</p>

<p>Just to state something, and perhaps let your mind wander- what is the value of education?</p>

<p>To provide everyone with the same tools neccesary to progress further in their learning. Past that, to provide those who desire further education with the opportunities to do so; those who want to take advanced physics can easily do so. The basic education everyone gets includes simple, building block-esque skills (fundamental mathematics) and learning how to think. The level of education that I see in my school- also known as rote memorization for the grade or for the app with very little passion, direction or thinking involved - is a far cry from that. </p>

<p>This is my (very simplified) idea of what education should be and its value. Why do you ask?</p>

<p>Just as something to ponder as you write your essay. Oberlin is a very socially conscious college, it could be useful to bear that in mind in relation to the value of education as you write.</p>