Does a low-achiever stand a chance at HYP?

<p>I consider myself fairly brainy, but idiot compared to the pool of applicants for HYP obviously.</p>

<p>Reason why I'm looking at HYP: Need-blind to internationals. And I want to do Economics+Philosophy.</p>

<p>A little history: I was borne in Hainan, China. Some ulu pandan city that you've probably never heard of. The older generation of my side of family there are ALL farmers. And my mom received only secondary school education due to that Cultural Revolution... </p>

<p>Came to Singapore during 1997 to join my Father's side of the family.</p>

<p>Was pretty active in school until primary 4, slacked for a hell lot of years. Am only gaining the momentum recently...</p>

<p>No President positions to speak of, only 300 over hours of volunteer work in Junior College [now, this is finally something that I've found myself to be genuinely dedicated to.]. But sadly, this is nothing compared to MANY MANY other people. I'm sure. :[ But, still, I CAN declare that I have my heart on this volunteering thing and I hope and I want to do more. :)</p>

<p>All my life I've felt like the minority of minorities.</p>

<p>Erm, firstly, my dad is schizophrenic. And to make things worse, I fell in love with my best friend of the same sex and gender, much to my own demise, in conservative, homogeneous Singapore. It took me years to realize that she felt special to me the minute I set my eyes on her. Very stupid, yes. I am embarrassed myself telling this story.</p>

<p>I was just wondering if I stand a shot at all applying to HYP.</p>

<p>If not, don't mind going to Community College first, then work the rest out along the way.</p>

<p>Because I blardee want to go to America!... As I am genuinely sure that I don't want to get a University degree just for the sake of getting a job, I want to take Economics+Philosophy because I cannot imagine myself doing anything else. And I want to have at least tried, while I'm still young.</p>

<p>After all, it is all about the academic freedom and names like Gary S. Becker, Peter Singer, Steven Levitt, HG Frankfurt, Paul Krugman, etc. People who have inspired me in one way or another, but I will not dare say that I know their work REALLY well.</p>

<p>Hoping to do some activism and effect social change with what I've learned overseas someday too. Who knows?</p>

<p>Can anyone give me any pointers? [there are not homophobes on this board, right? God bless me...] =Pp</p>

<p>hey, I'm singaporean too, and no I'm not a homophobe. before anyone can help you, you need to tell us your stats, like SAT scores, ccas, achievements and whatever etc that you're gonna put on your application.</p>


<p>Seriously, there's not much CCA achievements to speak of. A very big-time slacker in this area, sad to admit. =.= The thing is, I've never quite found one that interest me genuinely.</p>

<p>But during the last 2 years in JC, I've been fairly active in community work and the like, a total of 300 hours over. And I can for sure that this is where my passion lies.</p>

<p>Basically, the notable ones include an overseas community involvement trip to Thailand, erm, that was the trip that settled for me that, this IS it. This is what I want to do. Nothing beats the joy of waking up every morning and knowing that you are doing something to help people. We did cultural exchange, we went uphills to a village to do building and teaching... The people there are just AMAZING. I was the second-IC for this.</p>

<p>And then there's a 3D2N Fundraising Camp whereby I ran around the whole of Singapore with classmates doing all sorts of weird things on the street trying to raise funds. It was really quite the experience, to me. As it truly tested our flexibility, dexterity, resourcefulness and all.</p>

<p>You know how volunteering in Singapore is like, endless flag days... So these would be the few that I would choose to include or something like that I guess.</p>

<p>Apart from that, I was a class representative for Community Involvement Programmes, an Orientation Group Leader, and Leader for a Racial Harmony Day event that was organised by MOE, I believe.</p>

<p>I regret to say that I'm a sucker when it comes to planning and deadlines, kept on missing the SAT. Was far too engrossed with A Levels anyways. RAWRRR I hate myself. But YES, going to be taking it in Jan next year, and my plan is to get something >>2200, go to my school, and see what they can help me out with.</p>

<p>Erm. I did a little diagnostic test while studying for A Levels [lol] in noisy Macdonald's, and I got near 2000 then. So I suppose if I cheong like mad after A's I am quite positive that I will be able to get my coveted scores. [Reasoned faith. :)]</p>

<p>As for SAT II, reasonably I'm going to be aiming at near full marks for Maths, Physics, and the like.</p>

<p>So I'll be having an uber uber uber uber uber long GAP year, something like that lor. [Sigh, can't help using Singlish with another Singaporean... =Pp]</p>

<p>Hoping to use the time to do some individual research on Econs and Philo, I mean, I already love reading books on these and boring my friends to Hell by ranting about them. But like they say, you have to show that you're really good right!</p>

<p>And since I'll be going back to China next year, I'm actually hoping to go around the country and see what it's like in those Cancer/ AIDS villages and etc. A very big reason I'm into Economics is that I hope to contribute to make it work for everybody as in ALL of humanity. As far as possible. And then, I can do a report on this and use it as a supplement for application too. Personally I'm already looking at the feasibility of microfinance in China. But not too much time to do this yet, still in the midst of A Levels.</p>

<p>Thing is, I just want to know if I stand any chance with these schools at all.</p>

<p>If not, I am quite ready to go to a community college first, then work it out along the way.</p>

<p>Basically, I don't want to just get a regular degree, settle for a regular job... etc. Not when I have a dream. And I will never forgive myself if I never took the risk. :) :)</p>

<p>It already took me so long to discover what I really want to do with my life. So I'm going all out! =DD</p>

<p>'ll greatly appreciate anyone's help!</p>

<p>Sorry about the wordiness... =.= I'm just being typically my gender. =Pp</p>

<p>Your academic potential and performance is going to be the primary consideration, especially for the ultra selectives such as HYP. These will be measured in your transcript and test scores. Also, there does seem to be an unspoken cap on internationals -- therefore making the competitiveness even greater (than the already small overall accept rate ~10%) amongst those applicants. If I'm to be 100% frank, this doesn't bode well for you despite your outside interests and passions.</p>

<p>However, there are many, many fine US institutions that would value what you have to bring to the table. Take your SATs and then re-examine what type of school you'd like to attend. </p>

<p>Best of luck to you</p>

<p>Thank you for the advise!</p>

<p>Well, the BIGGEST reason I'm thinking about these schools is because they offer need-blind financial aid to international students. There is NO WAY my family can afford a US tertiary education for me. We don't even have a car to sell or something, lol... Which is also why I don't rule out community colleges either.</p>

<p>Yepyep, I'm working at it like never before now. :]</p>

<p>Good luck to everyone else working to MAKE their dreams into reality too [this phrase is so over used =Pp]!</p>

<p>hey i'm sporean too, which school are you from? about applications, just some qns to get a better idea about your chances... besides sats scores they focus on your high school record, any idea about your predicted grades based on how you have been faring in school so far? would your guidance counselor be able to write favourably about you; ie he/she knows you well enough to talk about your background, motivations etc. did you join a cca in jc, say some form of volunteer organisation?</p>

<p>besides HY and MIT, Williams and Middlebury are needblind for internationals.
love your aspirations btw :) i'm sure you'll make it if you don't give up</p>

<p>I'm a Singaporean too =p. As T26E4 said, HYP look at your potential in doing well at college (and life in general) by looking at your transcript, SAT scores and extra-curriculars. </p>

<p>Although I don't doubt that you are passionate about community service, your stats as posted do not stand out among the waves of international applicants to these 3 schools (there were 9 acceptances from 140 applications to HYP alone from RJC in the 2003-2004 cycle). You do not seem to have anything that would make HYP admissions say "whoa! we better admit this person!". </p>

<p>To give you an idea of what sort of people are usually admitted from Singapore: I know of one senior who was admitted in the 2004-2005 cycle to Harvard RD and Yale EA from Singapore (he is now at Harvard after serving his NS). He was captain of the squash club (they won national schools champions that year), still somehow manage to clocked 1000+? hours of CIP/SL over 2 years, and got 4As and 2 Distinctions, among other things. </p>

<p>Otherwise, HYP admits from Singapore would usually have international-level representation (usually at the olympiads: IMO, IPhO, IChO, IBO, IOI, but sometimes in SEA Games, etc...) and won medals for Singapore. </p>

<p>So, your chances at these schools doesn't look very good.</p>

<p>Erm. My school ah. Like a bit not too good to reveal so much personal information online, you know? After all, Singapore has "SO MUCH" JCs lar. Hehe.</p>

<p>SERIOUSLY, my JC record SUCKS, big-time.....</p>

<p>The fact is that I had to endure the pain of taking Maths and Science for so long before I truly realize that my heart is really into Econs and Philo..... And it IS where my comparative advantage lies. Lol.</p>

<p>I have a feeling that my A Levels is going to suck big-time too. Personal issues so I'll have only myself to blame, lor. :[</p>

<p>But my academic history is PSLE 250+3 bonus points, O'Levels 8 pointer lar.</p>

<p>Obviously we all joined CCAs in JC, hehs. But I'm really much more active in volunteering work. Actually was planning to do another overseas project in Cambodia post A-Levels. I actually contacted a self-initiated organizer online and we had a couple of meetings... But couldn't do it in the end because of a lack of cash on the part of the person [me] who wanted to fly over to help. SIGHS. Even so, I'm not the giving up type! In the process of applying as an International Delegate for Global Engagement Summit. 'll see how things go. At least this one offers financial aid for accepted applicants. Lol.</p>

<p>Yeah, I think I'm going to need to have an uber long talk with my school counselor and teachers and all... "BARE MY HEART OUT". Because I don't want them to write a generic letter for me, and I definitely know why I'm doing all these, and it's important to me that others understand too... I'm just a bit tentative about how much should I reveal, AHHH!</p>

<p>It's never too good to be too open in Singapore right? We're traditional, and word spreads around real quick... WAHHHHH. >.<</p>

<p>The good thing is that my GP teacher should have some fairly good things to write about me. GP is among my strongest subjects. [see, I'm so in the wrong stream.]</p>

<p>Also, I would like to point out the fact that although only HYPM+WM are need-blind to internationals, doesn't mean that other schools don't provide aid to us. Research on their FA policies (and merit aid) too.</p>

<p>Oh, Oh, Oh, OMG!</p>

<p>Yep. I am aware that the international pool is REALLY REALLY competitive. Sometimes even I find myself pretty ridiculous for dreaming of all these schools when there are all these Hwa Chong, Raffles, etc. students around... I have only one word to describe the students from these schools: SPEECHLESS.</p>

<p>But, wells, I always believe that: If you want something, go get it.</p>

<p>I know I am very much behind in this race... Which is why I should start running like mad now right! Lol. If I'm not going to do something about my dreams now, then when? Hehe. [sorry about the self-talk... =.=]</p>

<p>This world could do with more dreamers who are not afraid of failures! :)) In fact, it's not even a win-lose situation to me. Because I already have everything I could ever ask for here in Singapore. Yet, there is this part of me that wants to be living rather than existing. And sadly, I cannot ignore it. [:</p>

<p>Anyways, I'm just holding a Blue IC lar, hehe.</p>

<p>Mighty big thanks to everyone who replied!</p>

<p>i dont think u stand a chance</p>

<p>To be really honest with you, unless you can tell us more, nobody can tell you... and by what you've said about yourself so far, your chances aren't really the most solid (but then, when it comes to HYP, things don't look good for anyone =x)</p>

<p>Go take the SATs. If you haven't taken SAT I at least, then you probably can't apply for most colleges since the December registration deadline is over and you're applying in January. Are you taking your A levels right now? </p>

<p>and hey you can write an essay or short essay about how you tried to organise your trip and but were unsuccessful. If you let your passion for community service show through, it's really gonna help you!</p>

<p>and yeah NEVER be too afraid or discouraged to try. if 18 short years have taught me anything it's this :D I like your attitude and your rahrahness! </p>

<p>Me too, I'm definitely dying to live outside this tiny island for four years and just let my mind roam free! If possible, I don't wanna go NUS because it's too stifling and unstimulating there, sorry to say.</p>

<p>ah a fellow international studying in Singapore. Assuming your A-level grades are good try to aim for SAT I 2200+. SAT II is not going to be a problem for an average person who already took A-levels. Then you'll have a shot, although its going to be slim (like everyone else's) </p>

<p>Make full use of the gap year that you have now. It's good that you have a goal to contribute back to the society, so definitely show that passion in your essay (but make sure your personality shines through! ie. how you can contribute to the college scene, not just merely listing). I don't know about community colleges though as I heard transfer applicants have lower chances of transferring into HYP or the ivies.</p>

<p>However, USA is not the end all be all in university education. We all know that HYP is very very hard to get into so do consider other universities too, like the Singapore ones. They are better than most, definitely.</p>

<p>yup frankchn is right, you could try other colleges as well especially if their profiles fit what u are aiming for in life.. LACs seem like a good fit</p>

<p>Yepyepyep, everything noted.</p>

<p>Chance is slim... Future uncertain..... But I love this quote from Million Dollar Baby: It’s the magic of risking everything for a dream that nobody sees but you. [I love quoting other people a lot. Because I don't have much of substance to say myself, YET. =Pp]</p>

<p>And yes, in the midst of taking the A Level curriculum that's just going to last 2 years or so, I believe. How great.</p>

<p>Just curious: How many Singaporeans are actually applying to the US? And why US?</p>

<p>My reason is pretty simple. There's academic freedom. I like controversies... But I hardly think that Singapore is the best place for even thinking about controversies. =.= The areas that I'm most interested in happens to be official taboos too. Err... Basically, religion and sexuality. Both Economics and Philosophy have very interesting things to say about both of these. For my mid-year GP essay, I actually wrote on religion. And obviously, I heard that my essay sparked off a staff room debate among my school's GP teachers. HAHA.</p>

<p>I hope our government does not patrol this site... Lol!</p>

<p>ditto reasons about applying to US.. refreshing change. although spore's evolving, slowly but it's happening.</p>

<p>Singaporeans? Quite a number from my JC, although a sizeable number of ppl is more interested in Oxbridge.</p>

<p>Why US? it is as you say. more freedom. meeting more people. building connections. quality of education. US still has, undoubtedly, the best universities. And there's brand name, ie. Ivy League etc. </p>

<p>I'm in the midst of A-level too. Darn economics paper.</p>

<p>"Me too, I'm definitely dying to live outside this tiny island for four years and just let my mind roam free! If possible, I don't wanna go NUS because it's too stifling and unstimulating there, sorry to say."</p>

<p>HIGH-FIVE YOUx100 on THATTT!</p>

<p>I actually heard that some NUS students wanted to organise a forum on Burma. It's like, OMG, FOR ONCE, the students want to do something BESIDES studying. And the University actually TURNED them down at first. Anyways, they did manage to get it done in the end with some professor's help anyway, I believe. But, it's just S-A-D!</p>

<p>And then there's the, our beloved Mr. Lee Kuan Yew goes to NTU only to ask "Is there no Singaporean who wants to ask a question?..."</p>

<p>This is definitely not where I want to be challenged and stimulated. Seriously.</p>

<p>I don't want to just get a regular degree a regular job start a regular family...</p>

<p>LET'S WORK AT IT EVERYONE! DARE TO BE DIFFERENT! REACH FOR YOUR DREAMS! [please contain all urges to slap me... =Pp]</p>