CHANCE ME!! pretty please?

<p>Thanks in advance for the feedback! Be as harsh as you need to, I would like an honest assessment and whether or not I need to change focus for my applications.</p>

<p>I'm a Chinese-American girl, thinking of doing pre-law or business.</p>

<p>SATs - superscore of 2320, 800 Reading, 770 Math, 750 Writing
SAT IIs - Chinese - 800, Literature - 780, Math I - 800 (yeah, I took the wrong math on accident)</p>

<p>Taking the hardest courses my school has (IB/AP classes)- as of senior year, I will have taken (plus AP scores):
IB/AP AB Calculus (5)
IB/AP Chemistry SL (4)
IB/AP English IV (Lit-5, Lang-5)
AP Government (4)
IB/AP US history (5)
AP Statistics (TBD)
IB/AP European history (5)
IB/AP Chinese V (5)
IB/AP Economics (TBD)</p>

<p>My grades kind of went to hell junior year, I dropped about 20 ranks and am now 31/586 students, GPA is a 3.9 unweighted out of 4, and a 5.44 weighted out of 6. I really wish I had tried harder junior year but it's kind of late now.</p>


<p>Debate team president (130+ members, 4 years as a member), I do policy debate competitively on the national circuit, consistently end up top 32 teams and/or final/semifinals at a tournament. I spend most of my time doing stuff for debate - researching, etc takes up ~50 hours a week so I really don't do many other things..</p>

<p>Chinese Club president (45+ members, 4 years as a member) - I speak the language fluently, and I co-founded the club during Freshman year. We meet twice a month to do tutoring for beginners in the language, learn chinese history, games/movies etc</p>

<p>National Honor Society - member as of senior year,
IB Student Organization member,
Mu Alpha Theta member as of senior year</p>

<p>Volunteering -
Most of this is also debate related, I attended a summer camp where we taught and coached incoming debaters for around 12 hours a day for three weeks, added up to about 300 or so hours.</p>

<p>Every other week or so I do judging and coaching at local debate tournaments, Friday-Saturday for about 8 hours a day.</p>

<p>IB CAS hours require some other stuff, so I have a few miscellaneous ones volunteering with Red Cross - CPR training, food shelters, water stand for a marathon.</p>

<p>Awards -
National Merit Semifinalist (PSAT - 235), will probably get Finalist but those haven't been announced yet.
National AP Scholar
Graduating Summa Cum Laude from my school, although that's only recognized by the district so I'm not sure how much that really matters (side note - should this be on my common app, or do I just leave it out?)
Chinese Knowledge Contest finalist - sophomore year, the Chinese government hosted a knowledge/writing contest internationally and invited the top scorers for a free trip to Sichuan. I was invited but turned it down since it was in the middle of the school year.
Lots of debate stuff - individual tournament trophies, "Superior Distinction Award" by the National Forensics League, etc.
Piano - I used to enter competitions until about junior year, never did super well - won 2nd place at a statewide festival junior year, and got Solo contest "superior" awards.</p>

<p>My recommendations should be fairly strong, one teacher loves me but not so sure about the other one. I really like my common app essay but haven't actually done the others yet - will probably start if I get deferred from my ED.</p>

<p>Most of my focus has been on debate during high school, but I'll probably continue doing it if I get into a college with a strong debate program (like this one). How do my extracurriculars look? I've been lurking on threads of other "chance me's" and there seems to be a lot of contradicting opinions regarding what's good or bad.</p>

<p>Thanks! If I missed anything crucial, please tell me instead of just skipping it!</p>

<p>Which college did you apply ED to and for what major?</p>

<p>I applied ED to Dartmouth, I put pre-law as interest 1 and business as interest 2 on the common app, but I haven't applied for a specific major.</p>

<p>Good luck with Dartmouth. Your chances seem good there. As for Cornell, I'd guess your chances are pretty good. You seem like a fit for ILR, maybe AEM, or CAS. I'd say 60%.</p>

<p>Grades -- Strong
SAT/SATII -- Strong
EC's -- Good</p>

<p>On ECs, you're showing a commitment and depth in Debating, rather than a breadth or activities. The discussion we usually have here is which is more important, Breadth or Depth. IMO, go with Depth every time for top schools. This shows both aptitude and commitment. It's always nice to have a couple of activities to round you out as a candidate, but good, to my mind to have a main interest.</p>

<p>The reason I say 'good' is that there's no WOW factor here; though perhaps Chinese Knowledge Contest-Finalist comes close. I don't have a feel for how prestigious this is, and whether it would be a major award, sorry. Don't worry about it though, 95% of admitted students, at least, don't have a WOW.</p>

<p>My only other comment -- with your grades, perhaps you can find two teachers who love you?</p>

<p>In any event, I think you will be a strong candidate at Cornell. Good luck with Darmouth.</p>

<p>Oh, and don't worry about Junior year -- your grades look great.</p>

<p>Thanks a lot for the feedback!</p>

<p>The system for choosing schools seems a little daunting to figure out, I'll probably start looking into those if (hopefully not) I get deferred from Dartmouth. Maybe it's just all the abbreviations and shorthand that are confusing me, haha.</p>

<p>Zephyr - apparently the Chinese Knowledge Contest was pretty competitive, and the Chinese government took it pretty seriously. But don't really know if it's well recognized by American schools; I'd say probably not...</p>

<p>When I was talking about teacher recs there's one who I asked that turns out to be very brutally honest about what she thinks - I'm pretty sure she likes me, but I'm not sure of the type of rec she'd write - she told our class last week that if she saw senioritis set in for anyone she'd personally send a new letter to their schools and change her rec. I hadn't really known at the time, and it's making me a little paranoid. I will probably ask a different teacher for recs if the common app allows it >.<</p>

<p>If you skipped a lot of classes does that hurt admissions? I know a certain Chinese-American girl who didn't show up for Chemistry for weeks at a time</p>