Match/chance me! Rising senior interested in polysci


  • State/Location of residency: north carolina
  • Type of high school: small private school
  • Gender/Race/Ethnicity: asian+white female

Intended Major(s)
Political Science
Possible music minor
GPA, Rank, and Test Scores

  • Unweighted HS GPA: 3.88
  • Weighted HS GPA (incl. weighting system): n/a
  • Class Rank: n/a (school doesn’t rank)
  • ACT score: 34

AP Calc AB, APUSH, AP German, AP Lang, AP Gov, AP Euro His
Taking some pretty cool philosophy classes - not APs but pretty advanced in my opinion - tons of writing

President of Political Club, Piano Soloist (pretty advanced - study with university professors and perform at universities occasionally), Piano teacher for local students, 100+ volunteer hours at local homeless shelter, writer for school newspaper

Haven’t started on my essays yet, chosen some great teachers for the letters

Cost Constraints / Budget
I’m very lucky to have no cost constraints

not really sure how to rank these and I’m definitely looking for more schools as well!
Emory, Georgetown, American U, UMich, nyu, Pitt
I’m totally open to the west coast - I just don’t know much about the colleges there so if you guys could recommend some that would be awesome. In general, I’m looking for a place with that’s medium-large and a decent social scene. I also want to be in/near a city.

What are your thoughts about post-college? law school? politics? policy? other?

Hi! Great question. I’m thinking policy analysis or ngo work. I definitely want a graduate degree but I’m not looking to go to law school.

What can you afford, given that you see grad school in your future?

Also, poli-Sci is pretty broad, and given your interest in policy and NGO, can you be more specific about the kinds of policy and/or NGOs you are interested in? After all, politics is not an end in itself (except for those addicted to power), it is more a vehicle to accomplish some things. So, what is it that you want to accomplish, or what is it that you want to improve in society and public life.

What is your weighted GPA? Will your high school counselor say you took the most rigorous courses available? Have you taken the APs listed or are they for senior year?

Is the poli sci club the only EC related to your major? What kind of impact did it make?

Georgetown is a reach. American wants a lot of demonstrated interest. Would you consider ED there?

Lots of schools don’t rank, but the GC will have to give an indication of where you are in the class (by decile). Does a 3.88UW GPA puts you in the top tier of your class?

You don’t have GWU on your list, but I strongly recommend it: it is simply the best school going for getting internships during term. With a bit of hustle you can have meaningful internships all the way through, and internships are the name of the game in policy world.

Have you looked at the Public Policy major at William & Mary? (I assume you already have UNC-CH on your radar).

Hi! My school doesn’t do weighted GPAs. The APs are all from past years. I’ll be taking a few more next year: AP seminar, AP chem, and AP Lit. The politics club covers a broad range of areas: activism, community service, and debate. I would consider ED to American. I really like it so far and would love to be in DC.

Hi! I’ll ask my GC about that. I’m probably in top 15% of my class. I also just looked into GWU and it looks really good. Thanks for that!

In terms of grad school, I’m not sure yet - I might do some jobs/internships in between to save up.

I’m interested in human rights and working with organizations such as Unicef and Amnesty International. Policy-wise, I’d like to focus on strengthening the public education system and supporting/educating children in lower-income areas. I hope that helps!

These sites may be helpful for consolidating your existing choices and for further exploration:

You need to load up on internships during UG in order to get an actual job when you graduate. Internships will have no/low stipends, and expect crazy credentials for really basic roles.

All of the strong grad programs will expect you to have worked for 2-3 years before applying- but even if they didn’t, it’s to your advantage to get the experience. Gradschoolkid1 is currently in a PP program, and says you can easily pick out the two students who came straight through. These two students both took 5 years for UG (b/c of genuinely amazing experiences), and came from the tippiest of top unis- and they are struggling.

Because you have strong scores and are full pay you would be a very strong ED candidate at American or George Washington. I’ve read the ED rate at American is above 80 percent. Your ED should be your top choice, but agree that DC is an amazing place, especially for your chosen field.

Thanks for clarifying your interests. I’m hearing a theme around improving conditions for children both in schools and through the broader issues tackled by NGOs like UNICEF. Am I hearing that right?

My suggestion is that you look at college as a time to develop that interest and to develop substance and knowledge about the related issues that come together around this theme. I would see poli-Sci as only a piece of such a plan of study.

Let me suggest that you look at colleges which promote opportunities for thematic and integrative learning. I support your interest in Emory, specifically in their major called Interdisciplinary Studies in Society and Culture as such an opportunity.

A second suggestion is Tufts University in Boston. Look at their departments of Child Studies & Human Development, Peace & Justice Studies, Poli-Sci, and Interdisciplinary Studies. I think that some combination of these could create an integrated pathway that would match your interests and prepare you for the next level.

Washington University/St. Louis is a college which encourages interdisciplinary learning and dual majors. They offer dozens of interdisciplinary majors in addition to traditional majors like Poli-Sci. Especially unique to their university is their Beyond Boundaries program, designed primarily for honors caliber students. It provides an opportunity for students to look at issues from multiple perspectives and is therefore outside any individual undergraduate college. Rather it employs faculty from across all of the undergraduate colleges. It’s not for everyone. A combination of their majors & minors in Poli-Sci, Global Health & Environment, Children’s Studies, Educational Studues, Glibal Citizenship, International Affairs, Medicine & Society, Refugee Politics & Pathways, and Urban Studies combine to offer an array from which you can choose majors, minors, or individual courses. An individualized major is also available (special major).

Pitzer College is a small liberal arts college east of LA in Claremont, CA with an enrollment of only 1000 students. BUT it is part of a 5 college consortium with adjacent campuses (literally across the street from each other) which together have a combined enrollment of about 5000 students and which together with 2 graduate schools to form what is essentially a mid sized university (7500 total enrollment). Facilities are shared, cross registration among the 5 colleges is routine, and interdisciplinary studies & social responsibility were part of Pitzer’s founding mission. Included among their 40 majors is Poli-Sci.

SESP (School of Education & Social Policy) at Northwestern University.

SFS (School of Foreign Service ) at Georgetown University.

Consider schools which offer a major in PPE (Politics, Philosophy, & Economics).

Be sure to become proficient in at least one foreign language.

Duke University has a large Public Policy Analysis major.

Understand that Teach For America or the Peace Corps may be in your future immediately after graduation.

Princeton–Woodrow Wilson.

Tufts University has a great graduate program (Fletcher School) as does Harvard (Kennedy).

Hi! Thanks so much for these ideas! I’m really liking Pitzer - do you think I have a good chance if I apply ED?

Claremont colleges believe fit is really, really important. The students that are drawn to each can be very different. Pitzer is very social justice oriented and there is a very clear vibe. Take time to watch all admission videos, etc. If you can demonstrate fit I think you would be a good candidate.


Pitzer has been acceoting fewer than 15% of its applicants, so it’s a reach for anyone. But you have a shot, so go for it. Just have a list that includes some realistic target and safety schools.


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