Reapplying to Harvard

Hi everyone,

I was rejected from Harvard during the '22 round, but was accepted into another Ivy school as well as some other top 20 colleges. However, I deferred enrollment at one of the universities and plan on taking a gap year to do some community service work around my area and spend some more time with my parents… and so I was wondering if it was worth reapplying to Harvard EA! I know what probably went wrong with this application- I royally screwed up the additional essay which portrayed me as uptight and too serious, which I’m not.
I was reading through past forums and saw how no one, from what I’ve read to date, has gotten into a school they were once rejected from, especially Harvard. Can anyone with any possible experience/advice/anything help me out?

stats: asian female, 35 act, 10 aps mostly 5’s and a few 4’s, plan on majoring in either sociology or linguistics

"it was worth reapplying to Harvard EA! "
no its not. the admissions office keeps copies of your prior application on file and will refer to that when making a decison.

you got in to an IVY!!
go where you WERE accepted , dont waste time looking back , and knock their socks off.

I doubt that one essay kept you out – sheer numbers/demographics/small number of spaces for unhooked applicants probably would have done you in regardless of that essay… If the college you took a gap year from has no restrictions on applying to other schools, then go ahead. But I’d assume your school you were already accepted to is still your most likely destination. Also, Harvard is reputed to keep old apps for 3 years, so they can refer back if someone reapplies. Your old essay (and any other comments from their previous admissions decision) will still be there. So if your app was flawed in some way (which it may or may not have been), they will still have that original info.

Personally, I wouldn’t take a gap year for this reason. Harvard is not “required” for anyone to succeed in life. If you’ve got what it takes, you don’t need Harvard.

I should probably mention this: Harvard was my dream school but I’m not super obsessed with Harvard or anything, I just wanted to apply to a few other top schools to see if I could get accepted after making a few changes. However, if there’s virtually no chance, then I don’t want to waste my time trying during my gap year!

Unless you do something amazing during your gap year that makes you a much more desireable candidate, I just don’t see it. If you reapply your chances while slim are not 0 vs not reapplying. But separately, you need to ask yourself why the obsession with Harvard. It sounds like you have other great options in hand. As you move on in life, there will be a lot of things that don’t break your way. You have to learn to accept and adapt to those situations or it will be difficult to be happy and well adjusted.

The above information was revealed in recent court document. Its almost a certainty all applications since 2015 are easily retrievable. Any reapplication I imagine will be cross referenced with earlier ones.
If by now OP has not had significant change in application from last year (like winning major awards, etc) I doubt just changing a sup essay in EA is going to make the difference.

There’s some holes in your logic :slight_smile: Dreams are something that converts into fruitful accomplishments later in life. College is just a tool to achieve a dream. It’s not a dream. Being a doctor, lawyer, engineer, etc is a dream. What you’re actually doing is taking your canteen full of water, pouring it on the ground, and hoping what you see in front of you is NOT a mirage. Smart motivated people are successful because they’re smart and motivated, not because they went to Harvard. You got accepted into a great school. Go and get your education!

I mean, what’s wrong with applying? If you don’t apply, you’ll long for what might have been. And if you do apply, you’ll feel like you did what you can…and now you can grow even more in love with the colleges that admitted you.

“35 act, 10 aps mostly 5’s and a few 4’s”
That’s all you think you need to state here? I hope you don’t think that’s all that’s important to a tippy top. It may not have been just about the essay.

Have you committed to attend the college that agreed to allow you a gap year? If so, I think you need to honor that commitment.

The margin of academic superiority that Harvard over ivy and other top 20 schools probably not much. The excessive amore toward Harvard is probably showing some issue here. What about get over the “first love” if the relationship does work out? People who can move on usually find that life is not always a straight path, and it is actually better in this way, so our lives are more like an adventure book than a textbook. Yeah, there is some uptight and too serious here.

? you make it sound as though I’d die if I didn’t get into Harvard. This post was for me to gauge whether or not there’s any point to me even reapplying.

I forgot what it’s called but I believe it’s a letter of intent: however, it’s not binding. I would just forfeit my deposit.

Oh geez okay I admit I wrote out a very rough sketch of my stats because I wish to remain anonymous. I understand there is much, much more factors to the admissions process. However, this is not a chance me post it’s a should-i-even-reapply post so I didn’t feel the need to post more to it.

The highlights: I got a 3.94 gpa unweighted, 4.68 gpa weighted, from california, president of NHS, concertmaster of a competitive charity orchestra, and started a nonprofit related to tutoring inner city children about a month ago.

Yeah that’s what I figured.

In which case, I agree with @BKSquared . If Harvard felt you were not what they wanted for the class of 2022, then unless your application is substantially different, expect no difference in results next year.

Love the school that loves you back.

Unless there is a very specific reason that it’s Harvard or nothing, I wouldn’t waste my time to apply since you’re in very schools anyway. Don’t chase after brand names. Any school in the the top 20, as you mentioned, you’ll get an awesome education and experience.

In my 8 or 9 years on College Confidential, I’ve only heard of one student who reapplied to Harvard after being rejected and was successfully admitted – but that was many years ago, when the applicant pool was half it’s current size. You might want to PM her for advice: @Hanna

Was the Ivy that accepted you Cornell?

I don’t think that you are going to learn anything as an undergrad at Harvard that you couldn’t learn at a different top 20 or Ivy League university.

If you attend any top 50 university, and if you do exceptionally well, then four+ years from now if you are considering graduate school Harvard will still be an option.

On the other hand, if you want to apply there is no harm in trying one more time. Spending a gap year tutoring inner city students does seem to me like a valuable way to spend a gap year, and is likely to make you an even better student when you do get to university.

I think that reapplying is not likely to result in a different outcome, but you will never know for sure unless you do reapply and see what happens.