Expanding my List..

<p>OK, so I've been trying to start working on my college applications, but I've realized that there are like NO schools that can really hold my interest. Duke and UVa are two schools that have been high on my list like forever. Other schools I know that I'm definitely applying to are William and Mary and George Mason (major safety). That's it! I want to expand my list to about 8 schools though, because 4 is not enough to me. I just need more options. Especially with 3 of the schools on the list are tough schools... Here are some of my particular interests:</p>

<ul>
<li>I don't like big cities. I'm definitely a suburban kind of person. Even rural will do, but it depends. I like a rural scene that's really nature-y, but not somewhere that's completely deserted with cows and whatnot. </li>
<li>I like smaller classes as opposed to big ones, although I don't mind big classes...I just don't want every class to be like 100+ people though.</li>
<li>A school that is great at getting students involved in undergraduate research, and research that is easily accessible...I want to be really involved in the sciences.</li>
<li>Somewhere with any kind of school spirit. Some top schools have like NO spirit at all, and I really want that college feel of kids who love their school.</li>
<li>College that has a good environment, in terms of stores, clubs, and whatnot that is around it. It'd be nice to do something fun off campus once in a while...</li>
<li>Good financial aide...my family is not rich, but we're not poor either. :/</li>
</ul>

<p>I guess here are some of my stats so you can see which schools would fit to my numbers:</p>

<p>GPA: UW-4.0, W-4.348
SATs: (Re-Taking in October)
SAT IIs: (Bio-M/Spanish in Nov.)
ACT: 29
Sex: Female/African American
State: Virginia</p>

<p>Extra Curricular:
- National Honor Society (11-12 Grade)
- Spanish Honor Society (10-12 Grade)
- Mu Alpha Theta (10-12 Grade)
- Science Honor Society (11-12 Grade)
- Key Club (9-12 Grade)
- Ecology Club (9-12 Grade)
- Tennis (10-12 Grade)
- Chorus (9-10 Grade)
* IB Diploma Candidate *</p>

<p>Leadership:
- Spanish Honor Society President (for Senior Year)
- Senior Class Treasurer
- Junior Class Treasurer
- Key Club Secretary
- Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Ambassador
- Sophomore Class Representative
- Freshmen Class Representative</p>

<p>Community Leadership Positions and Activities:
- Co-Founder: Local Elementary School P.E.P. Program (teaching/babysitting Latin American students, communicating with parents, etc.) (10-12 Grade)
- Volunteer, Hospital Junior Volunteer Program (10-12 Grade)
- Team Captain (11th Grade), Recreational Basketball (7-12 Grade)
- Member, College Early Identification Program (for First Gen. College Kids) (7-12 Grade)
- Volunteer, American Red Cross Youth Corps (10-12 Grade)
- Church Nursery Volunteer, Church (9-12 Grade)
- Member, Church Youth Group (9-12 Grade)
- Tutor, Middle School Spanish Club (9-12 Grade)</p>

<p>Programs/Research/Volunteer:
- 2010 Virginia Girl's State
- Internship in Biochemistry at Local University (8 weeks, 40 hours a week, program modeled after NIH)
- 200+ Community Service Hours for IB Program
- Pre-IB Personal Project (Exploration of Careers in Medicine: Including shadowing different medical professions, learning terms, hospital experience, etc.)
- 2010 CDC Disease Detective Camp</p>

<p>Bump? I really do need the help...</p>

<p>
[quote]
I like a rural scene that's really nature-y, but not somewhere that's completely deserted with cows and whatnot.

[/quote]

This seems somewhat contradictory.<br>

[quote]
- Good financial aide...my family is not rich, but we're not poor either. :/

[/quote]

If your family is not poor I think you mean merit aid? What is your family's EFC? </p>

<p>Your desire for undergraduate research and big school spirit leans toward large universities. You already have your in-state schools on your list (except maybe VT). OOS public Us, for the most part, will not give you any FA beyond the basic federal. For colleges offering merit aid your ACTs are a little low to get much.</p>

<p>Have you thought about schools like Middlebury, Bowdoin, or Colby? Or do you want to stay in the South?</p>

<p>I thought about Middlebury actually. As long as the college is on the east coast then it's good.</p>

<p>Here's a list that you might want to look into:</p>

<p>Vanderbilt - this has everything you want, except it is in a city. It does have a campus though, so it's not at all like going to NYU. A lot of people who like Duke also like Vanderbilt.
Wake Forest - this school is suburban/rural, has a lot of school spirit, and is pretty strong on the academic side of things too.
Washington University in St. Louis - this school has basically everything you're looking for, and is also known for giving good aid.
Bates - it's pretty small and rural, but I've never met someone who goes there and doesn't like it, if that's telling you anything. Class sizes are definitely small and lots of research opportunities because it's such a small school. I don't know if there's much to do off campus though. There's no Greek Life here, though, and judging by the other schools you picked, it seems like you might be into Greek Life (or maybe it is just because all the schools you've picked are in the south, which tends to have more Greeks).
Bowdoin - It's a lot like Bates. Again, no Greek Life, but there's plenty to do.
Colby - see Bates/Bowdoin.
Colgate - Has the school spirit, small classes, etc. that you like, and it also has a Greek system, which is fairly prominent. Rural, but not exactly "cow town."
Lehigh and Bucknell - I don't know much about these schools, except that the Greek life is huge, and that they have a good amount of school spirit.
Dartmouth - I think Dartmouth actually fits perfectly with what you want, except since it's an Ivy, it doesn't give out merit aid, only need-based. However, it is pretty easy to get need-based aid (you don't have to be dirt poor). But also you'd have to get your ACT up at least above 30 to have a better shot. It's #1 in the country for undergraduate teaching, alumni are fiercly loyal to their school, it's definitely rural, Hanover is a cute town with some stuff to do, but the action is definitely on campus and you can always find a lot to do, and I think you can do research starting your freshman year.</p>

<p>I'm doing the college search too, so that's how I know most of this (some from visits, some from friends, etc.). I hope this helped!</p>