Chances at Harvard, Stanford, Duke, Northwestern, Penn

<p>Hey, I’m a junior and am very interested in the above schools. Please tell me my chances! </p>

<p>Basic Info
Asian male from Council Bluffs, Iowa</p>

GPA: 3.98 UW, 4.06 W
AP Courses: Euro (4), Chem (3), BC Calc (4, 5 AB), Lang & Comp (4)</p>

<p>Standardized Tests
ACT: 33 (35E, 32M, 33R, 31S, 33 E/W)
SAT II: Math Level 2 – 720 (will retake), Chem – 700, Lit – 700 </p>

Forensics: competed in HI (individual event) and Duet, 2-time state champ in HI, 1-time state runner up in HI, 1-time state runner up in Duet, 3-time district champ in HI, 3-time conference champ in HI, 3-time state champ as team, Novice of the Year award, numerous other medals</p>

<p>eCybermission national science fair: winner in northwestern region for application of science, math, and technology </p>

<p>Math Club: class C state champ in UNL math contest (9, 10, 11), competed on first place quiz bowl at UNL math contest (11), wrote test questions for middle school contests</p>

<p>Acadec: on school’s Honors team (3.7+ GPA), 1st in Math at Regionals, 2nd in Economics at Regionals, 1st in Math at State </p>

<p>Golf: Most Improved Player award (10), Best Sportsmanship award (10), varsity letter (10)</p>

<p>Tennis: varsity letter (9, 10, 11), Academic All-State (11)</p>


Biomedical research on neurodegenerative disorders at UNMC (summer from June-August)</p>

<p>please chance me! also, i am wondering if forensics is “special” enough as an extra curricular activity. clearly, it’s the activity that i put the most work in and get the best results out of… but i don’t know if it’s “special,” which is important. also, which top schools don’t look at freshman grades? please help!</p>

<p>IMO, you have a reasonable chance at Harvard, Stanford, Duke, Northwestern, and Penn. I think you have clearly demonstrated academic preparedness so it is going to come down to your essays, recs, and how well you told your story in your ap. </p>

<p>I was just re-reading the large cross-school results threads from April of last year (class of 2014 RD decisions) and was again reminded how amorphous the process is when seeing how many people that were rejected or waitlisted from schools like Duke or Northwestern or Penn (albeit great schools and challenging admissions but sometimes considered more predictable in admissions), but would be accepted at Harvard or Stanford. So in my humble opinion it is often very difficult to distinguish your chances from any of your 5 venerable college choices.</p>

<p>I would be very surprised if you did not get accepted to at least one of your choices and probably more.</p>

<p>thanks! just wondering, do any of these schools not consider freshman grades? also, where is a part of my resume that i can improve on? i do have some volunteering (nhs, cross-age, hospital volunteer), and maybe i should do some more of that, but is volunteering really THAT significant in the application?</p>

<p>A 3.98 unweighted GPA would indicate that your freshman grades were perfect? Why does it matter whether or not they are considered?</p>

<p>And with closer inspection, how is it possible to have a 3.98 UW, and only a 4.06 W - considering all the AP classes you have taken?</p>

<p>Your AP scores are not over the top, nor are your SAT II’s - but 700’s are fine and I believe (if you actually have 3.98 UW GPA) you have already made a convincing case for academic prepardness for any school. </p>

<p>Now is the tougher part, where adcom’s will measure you for ‘fit’ to their campus/culture and determine if you bring ‘contribution’ to campus through your unique qualites. So yes, more volunteering is an excellent idea. Adding a unique EC wouldnt hurt either but probably more fruitful at this stage would be to take a writing course at your local college and spend the next 6 months perfecting essays and your essay writing skills.</p>

<p>Give the adcom’s the opportunity to visualize or “know” you through your humor, values, and intelligence, with original and inspired essay responses and you will greatly increase your odds of a favorale decision.</p>

<p>actually i had a B+ in one of my classes first semester of my freshman year… that kinda sucked. thanks for the advice on the writing class; i never really thought of that. can anyone else chance me? thanks for the advice though!</p>

<p>what is your class rank? your SAT scores are definitely on the low sides, while the AP scores confirm that you might not have had as rigorous of a high school academic preparation as a good percentage of the applicants to the colleges you listed. if admitted to these schools, you’ll have to work very hard to catch and keep up a good GPA, at least until you get used to the work.</p>

<p>stanford and harvard are unlikely, but slightly better chances at the other three.
mention the volunteering.
your extracurriculars are a little spread out, so come up with some kind of coherent thread to tie up all of these interests of yours. in other words, how is it that you like forensics and math and golf and volunteering and tennis and everything at the same time? is there something in common about all of them? what does it show about who you are, and why do you think the adcom should admit you because of that? no need to answer them explicitly, but make sure that after someone reads your app, he is shown the answer to these questions.</p>

<p>thanks for the help! while we’re talking about my chances at these schools, i have another question: should i ED at Duke or RD at all of them and see how i do at all of the schools. here’s the thing… i really, really like Duke… but i know that if i got into Harvard, i’d go choose Harvard over anything. but i just read that Duke hit 29,500 applicants and that’s a huge number… which will mean their RD acceptance rate might be 10% or lower. if i did RD and got rejected by Harvard but accepted everywhere else (somehow), i’d pick Duke right away. </p>

<p>if i ED to Duke, i’ll never know if i could’ve gotten into Harvard. if i RD everywhere, i might not get into any of these schools and forever regret not ED’ing. according to my stats, do i even have a realistic shot at Harvard? is it worth RD’ing over ED’ing to Duke?</p>

<p>I must disagree with the posts. Your test scores are not up to the standards for Harvard and Stanford. In particular, the math and chem subject tests are very low (you should be getting 800 or very close to it), but your lit is okay. Secondly, your AP scores call your academic ability into question and also it seems like there is massive grade inflation at your school. Most of your scores should be 5 since the exam has a generous curve in most cases. My advice is to get those test scores up and invest your time in one activity and get good at it. It’s not too late yet. Good luck.</p>

<p>All schools are very high reaches for you with the exception of Northwestern, which is more of a match. </p>

<p>But yeah, a lot depends on your essays. Hopefully, you might just get into one of the other four! best of luck!</p>

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<p>thanks. i haven’t actually taken the ap chem/sat chem or the ap lit/sat lit tests yet… so those scores are approximations based on practice tests and stuff. by the way, my sister will be graduating from northwestern this year and i am wondering if that counts as legacy for me. i’ve heard that legacy usually only counts for CHILDREN of alumni, so would it not work for me through my sibling? please help. thanks</p>

<p>Sibling is generally considered legacy.</p>

<p>can anyone else chance me?</p>