Senior looking for safeties

<p>Hi, I'm a senior and I've finished most of my applications by now, but I haven't applied to any safeties. So far I've applied to </p>

<p>UChicago
MIT
Brown
Stanford
UMichigan</p>

<p>Here are my stats:
SAT: 2230 Math:800 Writing: 720 Reading: 710
PSAT: 2240 SAT II: Math, Chemistry, US History: 800
8 APs, 5 from Junior and sophomore years are 5, the other 3 I'm taking this year
GPA: 4.08 weighted, i'm barely in top quintile of class, I think this'll hurt me the most. But my junior year I was probably top 5%.
ECs: Math team 4 years, de-facto captain 1 year, captain 2 years (explosive gain on team when I was there, we went from 14th to 7th to 4th over three years, first time our school made New Englands was last year)
Academic (4 people in school) team 4 years, captain 1 year
Jazz Band 2 years, section leader 1 year
USNCO qualifier
I got 2nd in a state-wide physics team-based tournament, and I got honorable mention for a team-based economics competition
ARML 3 years, made tiebreakers last year
4 time AIME qualifier
Columbia SHP 11, 12
2-time regional and 2-time state math league winner
Summer: I went to a math camp
Recommendations: Amazing</p>

<p>The only caveats I'd like to make about the college I go to is I want it to have a strong math and science program but also have a rather flexible curriculum.
For size, best would be between 1000-5000 undergrads but it isn't a big deal if not.
For area, I would most like it to be in northeast or maybe the old northwest, but as you can see from my stanford choice, this isn't a big deal either.</p>

<p>If any of you can think of good safety schools for me, I would be very grateful.</p>

<p>Do you have cost and financial aid constraints? A safety must be certainly affordable.</p>

<p>Your in-state public universities are likely the best safety candidates if you have not missed the deadlines already.</p>

<p>Alabama and UAB are obvious safeties with your stats, but you have missed the Presidential Scholarship deadline at Alabama, and UAB gives out Blazer Elite scholarships on a first-come-first-served basis, and it is rather late in the process by now.</p>

<p>University of Minnesota is also worth consideration, and has a relatively low out of state list price, but you have missed the priority application deadline, so an application now would be on a space available basis, with lesser chance of a scholarship offer.</p>

<p>Stony Brook University has a good reputation in some of the sciences, even though it has little overall reputation. Cost of attendance is on the low side for out of state public universities, and you have not missed the deadline.</p>

<p>Carleton, Bucknell, and Harvey Mudd may be smaller schools with stronger math and science than other smaller schools, but they probably would not be safeties (and you'll have to check deadlines).</p>

<p>As a last resort, the default safety is to attend community college and transfer to a state university as a junior.</p>

<p>Important lesson for current high school juniors: determine your safety school(s) first. Otherwise, you may risk being shut out.</p>

<p>* I want it to have a strong math and science program but also have a rather flexible curriculum.
*</p>

<p>If you're coming with AP credits, then many schools will be "flexible" schedule-wise since you're AP credits will cover much/all of Core Curriculum req'ts. My kids had all of their Core req'ts covered by AP reqts except for one class. </p>

<p>With your high stats, a school with a past scholarship deadline might still consider you for a large scholarship.</p>

<p>Are you a likely NMF?</p>

<p>What is your budget? Most safety schools do not give much need-based aid.</p>

<p>I'm a National Merit Semifinalist, and I have a rather good chance for Finalist, but that stuff doesn't get released for a few months.</p>

<p>Also, by flexible, I mean I can take classes in a lot of different departments/subjects easily.</p>

<p>As for budget I've never looked in depth into those things, mostly it was my parents. My brother got 20k a year after grants and need-based brought it down from 50k, so hopefully something around there.</p>

<p>@uc Harvey Mudd was on my radar, I'll definitely check it out.</p>

<p>@all I have a 15k a year scholarship to University of Rochester if I get in. Is that a good safety?</p>

<p>I would say Penn State but the application deadline has passed, sadly.</p>

<p>Might look at Holy Cross(don't have to be religious) has very good science programs and in particular physics. HC has a great sense of community and a great balance of academics and social life -music, theater, internships etc. With those stats might get a good financial aid package. Holy cross has a very nice campus including new science building and very good alumni network. Holy Cross aplication deadline is January 15.</p>

<p>What do people think about Tufts, Amherst, Colgate, Johns Hopkins, and Northwestern? Are they good for what I talked about? I'm pretty sure they aren't safeties, but are they targets or reach?</p>

<p>Once again, thanks in advance.</p>

<p>Here is a video of an amazing own goal to entertain you guys:
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wXb8RjGLcZk&feature=player_embedded%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wXb8RjGLcZk&feature=player_embedded&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>
[quote]
My brother got 20k a year after grants and need-based brought it down from 50k, so hopefully something around there

[/quote]

No way to tell without knowing the school your brother attends. For instance, while Harvard may offer good FA to families making over $150K most other schools do not.</p>

<p>Vassar college</p>

<p>A safety must be a school you are assured of getting into, and which you can certainly afford to attend, as well as being suitable otherwise for you.</p>

<p>Tufts does not like being used as a safety; look up "Tufts syndrome". Basically, any school which lists "level of interest" as an admissions criterion should not be used as a safety.</p>

<p>Once again, have you considered your in-state public universities, or the public universities with cheap out of state costs and/or generous merit scholarships offered strictly on the basis of your grades and test scores? The public universities are much less likely to be looking at "level of interest", and are more likely to be determinable as safeties, than the private universities with more opaque holistic admissions processes.</p>

<p>If you do not apply to any school as an assured safety, then your default safety is community college. Even then, you should plan for that, rather than back into it after being shut out.</p>

<p>Yeah, after you told me, I decided I'm going to apply to my state school.
When you say, "used as a safety", what do you mean? I plan on taking a lot of time over the next weeks on whatever application I do, so as long as the college fits what I want, I will try my hardest to get in. When I say safety, I mean what you describe in your first line, I don't mean that I won't try on the application or that I would not like it if I went there.</p>

<p>Ask your parents how much they'll pay each year. </p>

<p>Family contribution can be about 30% of family income at many full-need schools. It could be more if your family has assets/equity. It could be less at HYPS.</p>

<p>It's hard to know what you'd get based on your brother's experience. We don't know if his school is extra generous with aid....or if his pkg had a merit influence or what.</p>

<p>Since you are a likely NMF, you have options for some huge scholarships from some schools. </p>

<p>*, I decided I'm going to apply to my state school.
* </p>

<p>Do you like it? Would you mind attending? If you wouldn't want to attend, then it's not a safety school.</p>

<p>What state are you in?</p>

<p>


</p>

<p>Some (mostly private) schools want to keep their yield rates up, so they don't want to accept students who are unlikely to attend. This means high stats students who would consider the school a safety, but do not indicate an unusually high level of interest in attending, are likely to be rejected or waitlisted. Tufts was a school known for that a few years ago, hence the term "Tufts syndrome".</p>

<p>@mom Connecticut. I've heard of UConn before but never really thought about it. I looked at it after ucbalumnus showed me today and it looked pretty good. In addition, I had always heard good things about it from other kids so I decided to try it out.</p>

<p>Since it seems like it's hard to judge exactly what schools will give generous aid packages, could any of you just write some schools that fit the criteria I listed above, I would probably make it in, and could potentially give a decent aid package?</p>

<p>Thanks again for all the stuff you all have told me.</p>

<p>Sounds like you should visit UConn soon, so you can get a feel for whether you'd like it.</p>

<p>*Since it seems like it's hard to judge exactly what schools will give generous aid packages, could any of you just write some schools that fit the criteria I listed above, I would probably make it in, and could potentially give a decent aid package?</p>

<p>*</p>

<p>It's hard to say. </p>

<p>There are 2 different types of aid. </p>

<p>Need based aid, which is based solely on your family's finacial situation. HYPS, which are the most generous, won't give you a DIME if they think your family's income/assets are high enough. :( Some elite schools ONLY give need-based aid. A few elites give some merit scholarships to target students that they really, really want....like URMs or students from unusual regions. They're using merit to increase ethnic and regional diversity. </p>

<p>The other type of aid is "merit based". This kind of aid doesn't care how much your family earns. these are awarded for high stats. Many top schools don't give merit because all of their students are "high stats".</p>

<p>It's hard to say without additional info. </p>

<p>You mention URoch...it sounds like it's awarding a $15k merit scholarship. If your parents wold apy the the other $40k per year to go there, then that's fine. If not, then it's not a safety. </p>

<p>*Also, by flexible, I mean I can take classes in a lot of different departments/subjects easily.</p>

<p>*</p>

<p>That's usually possible unless you're an Eng'g major. Even still, an eng'g major can often take various classes if they have AP credits that the school accepts.</p>

<p>If the aid question is too difficult to settle, then how about just colleges that follow the criteria i listed above and I could probably get in. I can do the financial aid research myself.
I guess I can also extend this question to schools that are matches for me as I'm not sure how likely it is for me to get into those schools I already applied to.</p>

<p>Sorry If I seem like I'm begging a little bit. I have very little time left and I realized very late that my application list was too top heavy. Any help given will be very much appreciated.</p>

<p>Virginia Tech and Stony Brook may be worth a look with relatively low out of state costs, if you are not too late.</p>

<p>you should apply to U Southern California. As a NMF you WILL be awarded a 1/2 tuition scholarship for all 4 years if accepted, and I'd say you have a good chance of acceptance- better than your chances at Amherst, Johns Hopkins, and Northwestern. USC has 20 different colleges of study and very good math and science program. With your stats you would probably be offered a spot in the Freshman Science Honors classes, which gives you access to some of the best profs in those depts, and the advantage of small class and lab sizes. The average student/ prof ratio at USC is 9/1 so dont let its large size fool you. USC will be a lot cheaper for you than Michigan, since you would be OOS. USC should be considered a academic match and a financial safety. USC also has a very generous FA program- 60% of students receive FA, and $ 225,000,000 of FA was given to UGs this year alone.</p>

<p>see below for a list of all the merit scholarships USC offers and for the student profile
<a href="http://www.usc.edu/admission/undergraduate/apply/scholarship.html%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.usc.edu/admission/undergraduate/apply/scholarship.html&lt;/a>
<a href="http://www.usc.edu/admission/undergraduate/apply/fresh_profiles.html%5B/url%5D"&gt;http://www.usc.edu/admission/undergraduate/apply/fresh_profiles.html&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p>

<p>Check out McGill. It's extremely strong in the sciences/engineering, located in a fantastic city, and has relatively cheap tuition. Plus, the application takes about 10 minutes to fill out (no essays at all!). With your stats, you're definitely in.</p>