College Admission Process Help [focusing on ECs]

<p>Hello there. I've been lurking around here for some time, and I've been reading a lot of the "chance me" threads and looking at peoples stats. I'm curious about the whole college admission process and the extra-curriculars that are pretty much necessary to get someone into an ivy league school. For one thing, is there an "unfair" advantage to those who have been doing an EC for a longer amount of time than someone who just started in high school? It seems like the Ivy leagues only select those who are outstanding, but to become outstanding, one needs years and years of work/practice in a certain field. For example, piano playing: Is a piano player who has been practicing two hours a day since he/she was 5 a better candidate to get accepted than a player who has been practicing two hours a day since he/she was 15?</p>

<pre><code> Also, are prestigious awards really necessary? What if you practice a lot and you really like to do something, but you're just not good enough to win competitions? What if you don't have the time to pursue that passion/hobby? What if you don't have any awards in high school, but during college you will be likely to receive awards? Also, what if you don't have a passion that you can do for several hours a day without getting bored? If you haven't found a passion, how do you show colleges that you have developed the necessary skills to get accepted into that college and do well there?

In terms of extracurriculars, what does one need to do to get into an ivy?
</code></pre>

<p>Thanks in advance,
-stef1a</p>

<p>Find something you love, and give 110%.</p>

<p>What if you don't know what you love? What if you don't have the time to give 110%?</p>

<p>I'm sure you've had the "find a college thats right for you blah blah not terms of prestige blah blah". So I'm not going to say it.</p>

<p>If you don't know what you love, try a little of everything :)
I tried my hand at acting, dancing, breakdancing, guitar, piano, writing, computer things (coding, graphic design, etc), Japanese, tennis, and about a dozen other things :P</p>

<p>I figured out that I want to become a professional actress/musician/songwriter in Japan.</p>

<p>Something that would've been hard to do if I didn't try them! =]</p>

<p>*PS I am aiming for the "Japanese Ivy", so I need to work super hard! I am willing to though.</p>

<p>How do you find the time to explore new areas? Usually, I have an hour in the morning which I use to eat breakfast and just relax, and then I have two-three hours of free time after I finish my homework, but it never feels like enough time. Maybe I just waste too much time on FB, CC, etc... I guess I'll try not wasting any time.</p>

<p>@rayna3: good luck getting into your dream school! :)</p>

<p>Thank you! :)</p>

<p>I'm usually busy all day (during the school year). I have tennis from 4:30 to 7:30, then I do my homework and go to bed. Or I'll be in a play and have rehearsal from 4:00 to 7:00. School gets out at 3:45 for me, so I'm always running running running!
I do a lot of things over the weekends too, or I take a dance class from like, 7:30 to 8:30 after tennis or other activities.</p>

<p>I wake up extremely early during the school year (5-ish), so I check my email and such then...</p>

<p>It's a busy lifestyle, but I love it!</p>

<p>All you really need to do is stand out from the others (in a good way), imo.
Try lots of things to see if you like any of them, like rayna said.
If you have interests of any kind, go all-out. </p>

<p>Me, I did nothing. I dropped piano (which I appreciated) in 7th grade or so, dropped art (which I loved) in 10th grade, dropped Computer Science (which I liked) in middle of 11th grade, dropped creative writing (which I'm serious about) sometime in 9th, etc. etc.
Instead, I got on the internet and read about random stuff like Socionics, Korean history, Asian Americans, etc. I could technically have written about these except I wasn't nearly interested enough to actually achieve expertise of any kind. All I realized was that people are generally stupid, especially on the internet. I could have written about that, too, except I was lazy and didn't feel like going into detail about trolls and mudkipz in precise, grammatical English. lol </p>

<p>Basically, raise your energy level and focus. Don't go half-way and stop the way I usually do. This requires a healthy lifestyle including regular sleep cycles, exercise, etc. Me, I slept barely 5 hours a day and actively avoided exercise because I did not want to sweat. That combined with the typical CC academic ambitions => freaking lethargic. On weekends I just crawled into bed and stayed there. </p>

<p>If you lead an active, involved, generally sparkly life like rayna does, then you will eventually morph into such an active, involved, sparkly person. Which will help you immensely in the college admissions process. That's all they're really looking for. Brains and sparkle.</p>

<p>Also, remember: lots of things are worthy of recognition, not just the usual stuff like classical music and student government. If you find the Homer Simpson family dynamics interesting, examine it, but also tie it to something practical so you don't sound like you need to be at UChicago. :D </p>

<p>That is my opinion.</p>

<p>Don't be afraid to try something! Or even when you watch something on tv, place yourself in their shoes and see if you would like it =]</p>

<p>mine was piano, saxophone, guitar, and honestly helping people! Try to find something where you won't regret and hate spending time on.</p>

<p>
[quote]
If you lead an active, involved, generally sparkly life like rayna does, then you will eventually morph into such an active, involved, sparkly person. Which will help you immensely in the college admissions process. That's all they're really looking for. Brains and sparkle.

[/quote]
</p>

<p>Haha thanks :P
I want to lead an extraordinary life. I want to be a professional actress, musician, and songwriter in Japan. Sounds hard to begin with, but I'm not fluent in Japanese (yet).
Planning to learn all the kanji that the Japanese ministry people recommend (2,042 to be exact).</p>

<p>From the Dead Poet Society:
"Seize the day... make your lives extraordinary!"</p>

<p>And Don't Stop Can't Stop by 2PM (Korean boy band)
"You wanna see me fall, right?
(Haters)
Like a candle on a windy night?
Yeah, right.
Just watch me do this.
Take a breath, hold tight.
I’m never going down without a fight,
aight?"</p>