Chance Me

Can someone please chance me?

GPA: 3.61 (UW), a bit higher than a 4.0 (W)
Class Rank: N/A (Go to competitive HS with around 900 people in my grade. Hopefully in the top 10%).
ACT: 35C (35 E, 36 M, 34 R, 36 S)
SAT Subject Tests: N/A (Due to Covid)

APs: Human Geo. (5), Biology (4), Stats (4), Calc BC (5), US History (4), Chem (4), Lang (3).

Taking Seminar, Physics C, Psychology and Spanish senior year.

Teacher/Counselor Recs.: Definitely above average. They all know me well. Also seen me struggle and go the extra mile to succeed.

State: Upper - Midwest
Gender: F
Ethnicity: South Asian
Income: > 200k
Hooks: N/A


  • Multiple MMTA (Music Teachers Association) awards in piano theory, popular styles and examinations. Been playing for about 10 years.
  • College Board AP Scholar w/ distinction
  • State Speech, FPS, Science Olympiad Awards
  • Made it to Internationals for FPS on multiple occasions (could only afford to go once and placed in the top 20%)

Medical-related activities:

  • Shadowed at a Dentistry (not my field, but the only opportunity I could find)
  • Volunteered > 300 hours in hospital (making charts etc.)
  • Started a non - profit to raise concussion awareness
  • Conducting research with a doctor at Mayo Clinic (sadly won’t be published by the time applications are due, but I will refer to it in my essays)

Other ECs:

  • Have my own piano teaching business
  • Tutored a student with ADHD (getting a letter of rec.)
  • Peer tutoring in ACT and general subjects
  • Have a blog and social media following of over 85k for a NFL football team; will not name for privacy (have done player interviews, etc.)
  • publishing a YA novel in mid August (displaying my passion to write, although I didn’t write it for college apps.)

Major: Neuroscience?

Schools I’m looking into for BS/MD:

  • CWRU
  • Penn/Jefferson
  • WashU
  • UMin
  • Albany
  • U of Illinois - Chicago
  • Brown
  • Northwestern
  • Boston University

Schools I’m looking into for Undergrad:

  • Vanderbilt
  • Duke
  • UW - Madison
  • NYU

My concern is my low GPA, but I’ve been steadily trending upward. I’m just worried I will be filtered out too early. My ECs and ACT are both solid, but I’m not sure what else to do to explain my low GPA.

Your grades and ACT are probably good enough to get you through the door though they won’t help that much for schools like Brown. I am not sure how prestigious some of your awards are (I never did FPS and are these Regional Science Olympiads or at a state or higher level). However, your ECs are pretty impressive and will definitely help colleges see the person in your application and can make you stand out from other South Asian applicants although they are slightly scattered for a person potentially majoring in Neuroscience. I think in your case a strong essay may be the tipping factor for you to get into some of these colleges. While Vanderbilt, Duke, and other schools with below a 25% acceptance rate will still be a reach, you’ll have pretty good odds for the 25% to 50% acceptance rate schools as long as your essay was compelling.

If you have the time can you chance me as well

What are your safeties?

Looking at your list, I do not think that “BS/MD” and “safety” belong in the same sentence. I do not think that any of these are safeties. Under your list of “for Undergrad” schools, I do not think that I see any safeties.

Are you from Wisconsin? If so then your guidance counselor should know whether the University of Wisconsin is a safety. If so, then it is a great university. If not, then you need a safety. Two might be even better.

Also, to me a family income of >200,000 probably precludes need based financial aid. However, it does not necessarily mean that your parents will be okay with being full pay at $80,000 per year, potentially for eight years. You should make sure that these schools fit your budget.