E.C.'s: Is Senior Year Too Late?

<p>I am currently a junior, and a great student (academically) at a great HS. The major problem I have is that I didn't attack high school with the same preparedness/awareness that most prestigious-college-bound kids do. It is not that I didn't (or don't) care, I just really did not get into the "What Do I Need" and "What Can I Do" topics until very late, for a variety of reasons. I did not join three varsity sports teams and become captain of any of them, I did not join five clubs and become the VP or President of all of them, I did not run for class President/VP/Treasurer and win, and I did not participate in many activities that I'm sure most people on here have (i.e. - Science Fairs, summer programs, etc.). Sorry to rant, but what I'm really concerned with is: Will joining a few clubs/teams during my senior year have any effect at all on my admissions chances? (I would start this year, but most/all clubs require signing up at the beginning of the year). Note that my academic stats are solid (GPA, rank, SAT/ACT) and I am not attempting to breeze through Yale or something. But, will extracurriculars tacked on in 12th grade help at all for GOOD schools that I am intellectually qualified for?</p>

<p>In case it may be of any help to any responses, the absolute best school that I might even consider applying to is NYU Stern (which is no slouch, I am aware). And it is not as if I have done NOTHING with my high school career, it is just nowhere near productive; I have considerable community service hours and a maximum of two E.C.'s worth mentioning.</p>

<p>Thank you in advanced to anyone who wishes to provide any insight.</p>

<p>It helps for sure! You have pretty much half your senior year before application deadlines- that's plenty of time to get involved in something. Whether it be founding a club or doing something else.</p>

<p>Why not apply to HYPSMPCBD etc? you only get one shot pretty much.. go for it.</p>

<p>Adcoms are looking for commitment above all else, so it's not really possible to enhance your EC portfolio as late as the beginning of your senior year. It's better than nothing I suppose, but it would be quite obvious that you were trying to make up for your lack of ECs.</p>

<p>Thanks for the replies, guys. And (Mal), although I am academically sound, I am not ELITE by any means. I do not think I would stand a quarter of a chance to even be considered at HPY, but I may have had a chance at an MIT- or Standford-type school, if my application was very well-rounded (meaning if my E.C.'s were my STRONG point instead of my WEAK point). But I appreciate the insight.</p>

<p>And zapa, I totally understand what you're saying. That is the main thing I thought about before making this thread, but I wanted other opinions. I am trying to get a feel for the commitment-versus-participation aspect. I do not want to go join 3 clubs next September and try to keep up with them if it is not going to make an impact that is worth the trouble.</p>

<p>Look at Swarthmore.</p>

<p>Why Swarthmore in particular?</p>

<p>I just looked into it briefly, and it doesn't seem they are much of a place for a business major (which is my intended area of study), considering I may apply to Stern.</p>

<p>Anyone else have any insight?</p>