How much does being a legacy help at Brown University>

<p>I'm a sophomore now and I'm a pretty big legacy at Brown. My mom, dad, aunt and both grandfathers went to brown. One of my grandfathers if a pretty big donor and is still very involved there. Anyway, Brown is my dream school, so does my legacy status help a lot? I go to a private high school in CT so the academics are very hard, which means my GPA isn't very good. I have mostly B's at my school now, which roughly translates to A's at the local public school. So how much does the legacy help and what else do I need to do to get into Brown? Thanks!</p>

<p>The legacy acceptance rate is somewhere between 30-35 percent. That is significantly higher than the overall acceptance rate, but still means that about 7 out of every 10 legacies who apply do not get in.</p>

<p>Legacy will NOT make up for any deficiencies in your application. Brown does NOT say, "this kid has a lower than average GPA but he's legacy so we'll overlook that." Legacies must have strong SATs, GPA, high class rank, great recommendations and solid ECs. The only exception to this is if your family is also a development case -- if your grandfather promises a few million dollars (not sure exactly how much is needed), then your chances of acceptance will be significantly higher. I'm not sure that past donations count that much, it depends on how long ago they were made and how much. </p>

<p>I've known quite a number of legacies who have not gotten in -- legacies with superb stats, very active parents, even one who has a slew of relatives going back several generations who went to Brown. I know several parents who assumed their kid would get in because they were legacy, and were bitterly disappointed.</p>

<p>There is no magic formula to getting in (other than getting grandpa to donate a ton of money). You need to talk to your guidance counselor about your GPA and how s/he will present you in their recommendation letter. Only your GC knows how your "not very good" GPA from this private high school will affect your admission to highly selective schools.</p>

<p>Keep working on your GPA, and make the very best presentation of YOURSELF that you can in your application package. Make sure you show why you are a good fit for Brown. I have no idea how legacy affects you but I sure know low GPA does. And you have to remember that you will be judged with your peers and many kids come from private schools with tough schedules/grading too.</p>

<p>Take advantage of Brown's Alumni Association ACAP program. The description from the Brown website is as follows:</p>

<p>ACAP is an independent college advising service, offered September through June, for the children of Brown alumni. This service is offered free of charge by the Brown Alumni Relations department, and is aimed at helping families understand and navigate today’s college admission landscape. Experienced counselors, both veteran admission officers, work with students on identifying colleges that match their needs and qualifications, discuss the actual application process and what makes a strong application, and consult with them as they make their final choices.</p>

<p>The legacy acceptance rate is significantly higher than the overall acceptance rate but not as high 30-35% in 2009. The alumni association may be willing to give you the actual acceptance rate for last year, it was not in this year's letter to alumni children applicants from admissions.</p>

<p>I am also a legacy (my father is a former president of the alumni association) and a current sophomore at Boston University. I took advantage of the Alumni's children college advising program and feel like it is definitely a great resource. As a transfer applicant for Fall 2012, is there any benefit to being a legacy? any approximate odds of how much it helps? Also, I know that Brown says they do not offer transfer applicants interviews, but I was curious, since I visit the campus often, if there was anyone I could talk to specifically or any loop holes that anyone knew of. </p>

<p>Please and Thank you :)</p>

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One of my grandfathers if a pretty big donor

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<p>If your last name is Rockefeller or Van Wickle, you're probably set.</p>

<p>I like Fireandrain's response but I would think that past donations are as important, or more important, than "promised" ones. We're talking about having your name on a building type donation and not $50K - $100K per year consistent giving which most would consider a "pretty big donor".</p>

<p>Disclaimer: this is just what I have tended to see in admitted students, not any scientific data, official inside rules or anything like that.
Legacy status helps to put you ahead of another student with the very equivalent status/stats that you have. It counts if your legacy connection is "closely tied" to the school, either as a past or directly ear -marked in the future by the school as an active donor (bequest in a will etc), or active re potential via active alum, first degree relative. So, grandparents, aunts etc. don't count unless they meet the "active" criteria. In fact even parents don't count often.
A sib at the school counts a fair amount, esp if they are doing well at Brown, as they like to see families stick together, and it really is a pretty fair judge of how you will do if you are at least as strong a student as your sib.
Legacy, as stated above will NOT overcome deficiencies in your grades etc, compared to your peers. (Unless you are in that mega bucks category, even then they are not going to admit someone who will fail at Brown. After all, that would tend to sour a donor!)
Legacy actually probably ranks below URM status or first Gen status with other "disadvantaged" status/diversity (like geographic diversity, first gen), as a boost to your application, something that alums tend to grumble about when a minority student with lower grades gets in, from the same HS as their child, but that is what I have seen.</p>

<p>FWIW, sibling status means nothing (or virtually nothing) at Yale although when four quads decided to attend a couple of years ago and it made national news, I can imagine the adcoms allowed the stronger ones to have tipped the "weaker" ones in.</p>

<p>I am surprised that "future giving" is a significant factor at Brown. What is to stop a donor from assigning a high value life insurance policy over to the university and then cashing it in or discontinuing payments? What about a bequest in a will that somehow gets changed? What better indicator do you have of future giving that consistent high value prior giving? The really big donors are probably on first name basis with contacts in the development office and I suspect they are just told to call if they need anything (like assistance with a relative's application). A top development officer at a HYP school told me that admissions never calls them to check on a legacy donation history. Either your name is plastered all over campus and admissions knows the name without calling or the communication is initiated and goes in the other direction.</p>

<p>Ivy grads at have grumbled for years that their advantaged kids are disadvantaged relative to URMs and first gen applicants. I remember reading about this in a letter to the editor of Penn's magazine decades ago. Agree with BrownAlumParent that legacy status isn't what it used to be.</p>