Is GPA too LOW? Despite good EC/Scores


<p>I am an ORM who attends a top private school in Southern California. Seems unusual, but Duke is one of top choices.
I'm applying RD</p>

<p>Full IB-Diploma Candidate
SATI: 2350 ( This is 2nd time taking, the 1st time I got 2150)
ACT: 35 (1st time)</p>

<p>SATII: IIc: 800, USH: 780, Lit: 800; Bio 740 (predicted)
AP';s: Calculus AB: 5; Bio:5; Euro: 5, Chem:4, USH: 4,
taking alot more senior year.</p>

GPA: 3.5 unweighted (Huge upward trend: 3.1, 3.5, 3.9, and I assume 4.0 for the 1st semester of senior year) I got 1 C+ in 9th grade and 1 C+ in 10th.)</p>

<p>My GPA probably seems pretty bad to most of you guys. But I'm not sure if it really is. My friend has a 3.78 and was told by his counselor that his GPA was the third highest in his class. Im not sure if anyone actually has straight A's in my class. The school is pretty tough. And many of the B's I got in 10th grade were in AP Classes which I scored a 4 or 5 on. I basically got straight A's in 11th (only 1 b).</p>


<p>Captain of Varsity Tennis team
Captain of Academic Decathlon team
President of Independent Political Club
Vice-President of Community Service Club
Member of Debate Team</p>

<p>Lots of volunteering and some work experience.</p>

<p>Essays should be extremely good. Writing has always been strong point for me, and I have already started on the essays, so they should be really good by Jan 1st.</p>

<p>C's are a negative aspect but it sounds like your school is very rigorous so this might help you. Your counselor should provide the college with a rank or rough estimate where you stand in class (top 10% e.g.) to "explain" your GPA.</p>

<p>The truth is, you can't change your grades. So the best thing you can (and should) do now is to write great essays that set you apart from the crowd and give the adcoms a reason to take you instead of the other kid with straight A's for four years. You definitely have a legitimate shot.</p>