Help in picking college list.

Here is my son profile and current plans.

Race :Asian, Male.
GPA : 3.82(UW) 4.8(W)
AP Courses :
5’s : AP Lang, AP Gov, AP Calc BC, AP Macro Econ
4’s : AP World History, AP US History, AP CS Principles, AP CS A, AP Physics I&II,

Senior year : AP Stat, AP Physics C, AP Lit.

ACT : 34(M-35 R-33 S-34 E-35)
SAT : 1500 - 750(M)/750®; 1490 - 780(M)/710®
SAT II Math - 800

Retook both SAT(for school graduation eligibility) and ACT. Waiting for results.

EC: 4 years. Debate team executive board in Senior year. State finalist in freshman year.
Scholastic Bowl : 10-12th.
BPA : 3 years starting from 10th. Junior year - Top 8 at state level at individual level, Top 3 at team level.
Summer Internship in local software company in programming.
Internship with local congressman during summer.
Internship with Motorola during summer junior year.
I Start Valley internship in entrepreneurship track. His idea is picked for Top 10 in competition, now leading the team in developing the idea.
Teaches English to kid in India.
Lots of volunteer hours in local church, food banks, math centers …
Worked as assistant at sylvan center during sophomore year.

He is interested in engineering with CS or CS+econ focus.

Here is the plan for colleges :

ED : U.Penn

Safety :
Iowa State
Michigan State
Univ of Minnosata
Univ of Maryland
Virginia Tech

Low Target :
Univ. Of Wisoncin
Univ of IL(CS+Econ)
UC San Diego

High Target :
Univ of Michigan(CS or CS+Econ)
Univ of IL(CS)
Univ of Washington

Reach :
UT Austin
Goergia Tech
U Chicago
UC Berkely

  • Any suggestion for college list?
  • Univ of IL doesn't allow apply for CS as 1st and CS+X as 2nd choice. We are looking to skip CS(It is high target/reach anyway) and apply for CS+econ. Is it good idea?

Open to colleges in mid west, east coast and texas. Prepared to pay upto 50K.

What is your home state?

Have you run the NPC on the private schools on your list to see if they are likely to come in under $50,000 per year?

If you are in-state in California, then of course UC Berkeley and UCLA would be well under $50,000. However, if you are out of state I would be surprised if either comes in as costing less than $50,000 per year. Ditto with UC San Diego, except that acceptance seems more likely.

We are in IL.

Thanks @DadTwoGirls . Yes, I am aware some colleges in the list can cost > 50K.

What do you think of other colleges in the list? Are we in the right track? We are hoping that one of the mid-west colleges in our target will work out for us but not sure if we are overly optimistic.

@Gumbymom can give you stats about the UCs. Personally, I would move CS at UCLA to the the reach category and CS at UCSD to the high target category. UCSD accepts many CS students into their second choice major so choose that wisely. Berkeley and UCLA do not consider second choice majors.

He might check out the Raikes School at U of Nebraska Lincoln. It’s a highly competitive interdisciplinary honors program, combining CS/software engineering with econ/business management and design. Here’s the entering class profile, with stats and major paths chosen within the program: From IL you’d get MSEP reciprocity there as well as merit $.

I don’t think MN or UMD are safeties for an oos applicant in CS

I also think the low targets are high targets/ low reaches for CS and the rest are reaches.

You have a list of schools that mostly admit by major and CS is very competitive.

It’s also very long and some schools are very much not like the others.

I’d start culling by running the NPC and getting rid of the unaffordable schools.

If you need to cull further start, your son needs to think about the kind of environment he wants and location.

@cheani1: Has he calculated the 3 UC GPA’s?

Capped weighted UC GPA is the most common GPA listed on the UC websites for comparison.

As an OOS applicant, he will only get extra weighting for the 5 AP classes and the UC’s do look at all the UC GPA’s.

Guessing his UC capped weighted is 4.2 or slightly higher.

2019 Freshman admit rates for UC GPA of 4.20 or above capped weighted and not major specific:
UCB: 38%
UCLA: 35%
UCSD: 71%
UCSB: 73%
UCD: 84%
UCI: 55%
UCSC: 85%
UCR: 97%
UCM: 98%

**2020 UC capped weighted GPA averages along with 25th-75th percentile range: **
UCB: 4.22 (4.13-4.30)
UCLA: 4.25 (4.18-4.31)
UCSD: 4.18(4.04-4.28)
UCSB: 4.17 (4.03-4.27)
UCI: 4.11 (3.96-4.26)
UCD: 4.11 (3.97-4.25)
UCSC: 3.94 (3.71-4.16)
UCR: 3.88 (3.65-4.11)
UCM: 3.68 (3.40-3.96)

UCSD would be a Target school while UCLA and UCB would be Reach schools for CS.

UCSD admits into the University first and then into the major, so he should select a non-capped/non-selective major as an alternate. If he is not accepted into CS, to change into that major requires a specific GPA and pre-req courses to be completed and then he is placed into a lottery for a spot.

UCLA is a direct admit into CS and has less than a 5% acceptance rate for CS with an average SAT of 1500+ and ACT of 35.

Is he applying to EECS or CS in College of Letters and Sciences at UCB?

UCB is also test blind this admission cycle.
EECS is a extremely competitive and a direct admit. CS in the College of L&S requires successful completion of the courses required to declare with the minimum grade point average (GPA), petition to be admitted to the L&S Computer Science major.

UC’s are $65K/year with little to no financial aid. He can be competitive for Regents at the UC’s. Here are the scholarship amounts:
Amount: Awards vary by campus and are not transferable if you transfer to another UC campus.

  • UC Berkley $2,500
  • UCLA: $2,000
  • UC San Diego $2,000
    **Historically, both UCB and UCLA have provided higher amounts for Regent scholars that have financial need however, it is not clearly stated if OOS and International students are included in the extra need based FA.

UCLA specifically states: The Regents Scholarship need-based award is determined annually and is designed to supplement the Cal Grant A and B programs, Pell Grant and other outside scholarship awards

UCB also states: Scholars with financial need are awarded a scholarship up to their full need as assessed by the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office.**

Number of Scholarships Awarded: Varies annually—students in the top 1-2% of the applicant pool are considered for the scholarship.