I am a junior, and I go to a competitive public high school near Boston. I am curious about my chances for Harvard early.
SAT II: Math II-?, Chemistry-?
AP tests: Music Theory-5, AP Calc BC-?, AP Chemistry-?
Freshman year: [Note: Any symbol, such as A- is counted as the semester grade, for my freshman year]
UW GPA: 3.80
Algebra II: B+ & A
English: A & A
History: B+ & A-
Latin I: A & A
Biology: A- & A
Leadership: A & A
PE: A & A
UW GPA: 3.93
Honors Precalc: A-
Honors Chemistry: A-
Honors History: A
Honors Latin II: A
AP Music Theory: A
Computer Science Engineering: A
UW GPA: 3.91
AP Calc AB: A
AP Chemistry: A-
Honors Physics: A
Honors Latin III: A
Honors History: A
Honors Choir: A
Honors English: A-
Senior Schedule: (Planned)
AP Physics C
AP Environmental Science
AP Human Geography
AP Computer Science
Honors Latin IV
Rowing: 1V boat sophomore and junior year, likely captain, probable DI/DIII recruit
Founder of the Marine Biology club
Class President freshman year
Leader of acapella club
President of the Hearing Disability Club
Worked at MIT engineering lab summer before my junior year and senior year; I am getting a letter of Rec. from the person who runs the lab.
-My freshman year, there were no honors classes and grades were semester-based, whereas my sophomore year and beyond, the grades are for the year and there is no A+.
-Rowing recruitment is a possibility and I have been in contact with the crew coach
Your overall stats academically is impressive but honestly nothing earth shattering. Thousands of other students applying to Harvard will have similar if not better credentials. If you are truly recruitable for crew, that may be your best hook for getting admitted to Harvard. If you haven’t done so already, I would reach out to the Harvard coach. He/She would be the best person to tell you if you are recruitable for their team and also let you know if your grades and scores are good enough as a recruit.
Drop APES. Take Honors English. Replace AP human geography with AP world or AP euro.
Can you take calc bc?
It’ll really depend on how recruitable you are and how well known to Harvard your school is as they may not like the rigor – unless it’s a school that’s well known to them and they know the rigor they want is there.
If OP is unhooked the odds will be long. Considering half of HS graduates have an average GPA of A I think any blemish on transcript in EA round will be glaring. And scores less SAT 1520 or ACT 34 probably won’t even get the application a serious read.
Hopefully, OP can get recruited for rowing.
^Actually, I have read plenty of MIT blogs before my DC was admitted to MIT this year. Holistic schools like Harvard/MIT are not going to stress the importance of stats. By my observation—and I have attended enough of admit events at MIT and Harvard as parent this year to get the sense— for unhooked applicants the stats were uniformly very high, to the point where applicants other accomplishments became more important. I imagine there are SAT1480 or ACT32 unhooked admits out there, I just have not seen them on CC or met them in person.
Unless you become a recruited athlete – which is a powerful hook – in the absence of other hooks, Harvard would be a reach even if you applied early. You might get in, but you probably would not. That’s how it is for every other H applicant who isn’t powerfully hooked.
My unhooked DS was deferred then rejected. Stats were better. Our HS is also competitive (sarcasm added). They love to plug that we made the US News top high schools list. Seriously, our school is relatively new and has only sent a handful of students to any of the Ivies, so probably not a great benchmark. My son had 1510 SAT (800 SAT II Math), 34 ACT. 8-10 AP classes, all 4 or 5 of AP tests taken to date. NMF. But, no hook.
Some of the EC’s are good ( eagle scout and crew esp). The SAT is too weak. It really depends on the school you attend. If you are talking about a school in the Boston area in the top 20 then maybe a good chance if its one further down then I would say 60/40 maybe. Also, many students are hooked. If that athletic position turns into a hook then you are in a different league. I would say work on SAT’s bring them close to 1600 ( maybe 1550 at least). The Math difficulty you have is strong. I would also say add some more interesting things to make you stand out. What will may you stand out from 10,000 other great students? Figure that out. And watch the reference from the lab head, it could be a detrimental unless s/he is really specific about why you would be a good candidate.
Any community service or doing something other than school? I’d play that up.
Another big factor will be recommendations. IF your school has a few students attend Harvard each year (even one) then it is a known factor. That’s great for you. Having specific references that make you stand out is important.