Chance Me! (T20's, UT, UNC, UVA, Tulane)

Hello! I’m a rising senior at a private school in Texas.
I’m really struggling to get a good grip of where I can potentially get into. Below, I’ll list my stats/EC’s

class rank: N/A (not offered due to ~125 class size). Would assume T25 Quartile, but not 100% sure as to if my school does that.
GPA UW: 3.75
AP’s: 11th grade (AP Calc AB, AP Stat, AP US History); 12th grade (AP Econ, AP Psych, AP Calc BC, AP Physics E)
Calc: 5
Stat: 4
Honor classes: N/A, school doesn’t offer them, but I’ve taken a relatively strong course load considering the rigor of my college-prep high school.

Test Scores:
1520 SAT

Honors/Awards: :
High Honor Roll (9-11)
Lifeguarding Regional Competition Award
ABRSM Piano/Theory Certificates Grades 1-4
Regional Charity Most Hours Award


  1. Founder/Vice President of (school) Investment Club
 Lead weekly meetings w/ 20 members; Club Simulated Portfolio: +7% YTD; Competing nationally in Wharton Investment Competition; Organize guest-speakers/events 
  1. Stock Trader/Investor (more of a hobby, but still including)
 Grown account from $1000 to $3.5k; Produced 5 DCF Models from scratch; Co-Run Discord (150+ members) & Instagram (1k+ followers) for investing community 
  1. JV/Varsity Athletics: Track and Field Runner, Projected Captain (12)
  School Record Holder (4x100m relay); Championship qualifier/competitor (9,10,11) in 200m, 400m, relays; Off-Season workouts; Weekly, day-long meets 
  1. ACT Now, Founding Member & Tutor
 Tutor underprivileged high-schoolers on ACT/SAT; 25+ tutors, 40+ students; Helped w/ marketing in schools/communities 
  1. Athletics JV/Varsity: Varsity Football Captain (12), Defensive Starter (11, 12)
 Varsity Letter (10,11,12); Conference Runner-Ups (10,11); Off-season/Summer workouts; Mentor underclassmen 
  1. Finance Internship w/ Edward Jones
  Analyzed case studies; Presented stock pitches; Weekly projects; Learned money-management/investment strategies, clientele relationship building
  1. Volunteer Organization
 Pres. Communications (10); Volunteer w/ local philanthropies (Meals on Wheels, Interfaith Foodbank, etc.) and community events 
  1. Piano
   Test biannually w/ ABRSM; Grade 1-5 Piano, Grade 1-4 Theory; Biannual community recitals  
  1. Lifeguard
   600+ combined hours ('18, '19); Selected for Divisional skills competition x2; Star Guard of the Week(x3)/Month(x1); first-aid/customer-service skills 
  1. Student Gov. Service Rep.
   Organized 3+ annual service initiatives/fundraisers; Led “Pack the GPAC” school-wide fundraiser; Represented students in administrative dialogue 

Pretty strong essays (or so I’ve been told); counting on them to “set me over the edge”; PM if you’d like to read/edit.

My interest/spike is in finance and my essay expanded on my stock trading ventures.

Boston College
UT (in-state)
Georgia Tech
Northeastern (school has strong connection, my stats alone will get me in)

UMich, Notre Dame, NYU, Purdue, Indiana U, UMiami Florida, Boston University

Any additional colleges suggestions would be much appreciated! In regards to finances, it’s certainly something that I need to weigh in, but it won’t hold me back from applying to any university.
Please let me know if this is realistic or not, thanks:)

also-- applying Cornell ED to improve my chances!

I am not confident that you will get into Northeastern. I think that with a less than 20% acceptance rate and an average GPA close to 4 I would put it as a reach. I only know one person who applied and they did get accepted with a GPA and class rank quite a bit higher but with a lower SAT score.

I think that you have quite a few reaches. I would not add any schools from your “considering” list unless you can think of some reaches to remove from the list.

I know that Northeastern may seem like a reach for me, but like I said, my school has a strong connection with them. According to my school’s naviance, out of the 30+ kids with above a 3.2 GPA and 1350 SAT, only 2 were rejected.

Even though you did not state specifically, it appears from your ECs and your “interest/spike” in Finance that you hope to study business in college…BE WARNED!..Getting accepted into the business school(s) at A&M and/or UT is not the same as merely being admitted into each university.

Although your stats are very impressive and you are a very competitive applicant, during the admissions process I would take the words “safety” and “target” out of my vocabulary when it comes to A&M (Mays) and UT (McCombs). It appears you have spent a lot of time on your applications for each school, but be mentally prepared to put both Mays and McCombs into the “reach” category until you get your actual acceptance(s).

Best of luck!

Points for ambition. For the exception of UT and A&M, the entire list is all reach schools. Either they’re statistical reaches or financial reaches. Going out of state or private comes with inherent risks. If you can afford one of those schools now, that might not be true in 4 years. It’s not uncommon for bright-eyed students to start at an exotic school and then end-up transferring back home because of a lay-off or business failure. COVID-19 has made that scenario more common.

I recommend taking all but a few of those schools on your list. Also, Texas A&M isn’t a safety, because competition for employable degrees are very competitive. U of H, Texas Tech, or UT-Dallas would be much better suited as a safety school because the competition to choose or change a major is not as intense.

I also wouldn’t mention “co-running” people’s portfolio…at all. At first glance, it sounds like a teenager giving illegal financial advice. You could get yourself into big trouble if luck swings the other way and someone loses money. This includes academic dismissal if such an operation were to continue in college.

I like your list.

I would guesstimate a 25% chance for a happy outcome at Cornell CAS RD assuming Recs and Essays inline with your SATs. ED would likely boost that into the 30s somewhere.

If there are other schools with similar admissions selectivity that interest you and neither the time nor cost of applying is a burden I would suggest applying. Williams is one that might be of interest if you see a future in finance.

Good luck.