Hi, I’m a current Junior and I’m planning to apply to college this fall. I’m an international student (unfortunately) and also I’m enrolled in IB. However, I need full financial aid (which sucks, cause it radically decreases my chances). My areas of interest are math, film and music. I want to major in both math and film but currently I’m more on the math side.
So let me talk about my academics. My SAT’s were cancelled so I don’t have any SAT stats at the moment. But I will take the August and the October one. But probably I will have a score between 1500-1550. My GPA is around %96 and according to the comments from my teachers, my predicted IB grade will be something around 43/44. I take Math, Film and Physics as HL and Economics, English and my Native Language as SL.
I have pretty unique extracurriculars. I’m not gonna list them all but they are all about math, film and music. I was also a finalist in an International Science Fair. Also, I compose my music for my film and I am very interested in film music. So I have some bunch of unique and good extracurriculars which will be in my advantage.
So my dream college is Columbia and that is because Columbia is both good at math and film. The best actually. But because I need full financial aid, I don’t think I will get in even if I apply for ED. So I have some other options in my head and I wanted some advice on which option is the best.
My first option is to apply Barnard with ED. Barnard has a great community. Also, if I went to Barnard, I would also get the film classes from Columbia as well. So I would be getting a Columbia education technically. But the drawback of this option is that I only apply for Barnard, and if I get in, I can’t apply for any other college, which I don’t want. Even though I would really like to study at Barnard, I would still want to try my chances at other schools as well. If I got in, I will feel like I missed my chance with other schools, if I don’t get in I will feel like I wasted my Early admission round because I could have applied to other universities as well. So I’m not really sure about this option.
My second option is applying to a bunch of schools that have non-binding EA programs. These schools are probably going to be
UChicago (This is one of my dreams schools. Even though there is no film major, there are some film clubs and plus the math department is very good academically here. So in Early application round in this option, UChicago would be my first choice. Also, I heard that UChicago has some pretty good financial aid opitons for internationals.)
Berklee College of Music (I would also like to study at Berklee. But it doesn’t have a math major obviously, but I wouldn’t lose anything if I applied)
Princeton and MIT (Again, I will probably not get in these schools (maybe 1% chance?). But since these schools have non-binding early action programs and since they are NEED BLIND for internationals, I guess I wouldn’t lose anything if I applied )
Remember that I am not going to apply only to princeton/mit. In this 2nd option, I will apply to uchicago, berklee, mit, princeton and maybe a bunch of other schools that have non-binding EA programs at the same time.
Also note that these are Early Action admissions. For my regulars, I think I would apply to everywhere (lol). From schools that have a very high admissions rates to ivies. But for my Early applications, I wanted to choose schools that I would both love to go and I have at least a chance of getting in (not talking about princeton/mit though)
Also, I’m considering an OPTION #3, which is applying ED to Columbia. But PROBABLY I will not do that because I will not get in
So, can you help me with that? Which option should I choose? Or do you have any other options? I really want to study at Columbia, but it’s a low chance. I would be really happy if you helped!