Several questions about Stern

<ol>
<li><p>Does applying ED to Stern significantly increase my chances of being accepted? I've heard some people say that, but I'm not sure whether I can believe them or not. </p></li>
<li><p>What's more important, GPA/transcript or SAT + SAT IIs? Right now, my GPA is really bad (3.4 UW with almost all APs/honors at a very competitive school), but my standardized test scores are decent (2150 SAT aiming for 2300+, 800 MATH IIC 790 CHEM). Will great standardized test scores make up for a poor GPA? </p></li>
<li><p>How much do extracurriculars and teacher recommendations matter?</p></li>
</ol>

<p>Thanks for the responses.</p>

<p>Hi, I will chime in while you wait for other replies (from Sternies).</p>

<p>1) ED anywhere, including NYU Stern, should result in higher chances of admission. Think of it, you are guaranteeing to go if admitted and will go through with the commitment except for "extraordinary (say, financial) reasons." You get a higher chance of getting in for your commitment.</p>

<p>2) Recently, a couple of people reported getting into Stern with lower GPAs (maybe like your yours) and high standardized scores in the 2200+ range. So your situation is impossible but I would say the other parts of your application should be extra strong to compensate for the lower GPA.</p>

<p>3) At the very competitive level of Stern admissions, everything matters. Though Stern tends to be more statistics-oriented than the other schools (high GPA and high standardized test scores). In your case, I would say, these are especially important to make sure you do not get in the discard pile based on statistics alone. And, of course, the all important essay that allows the Admissions people to know you more directly and personally.</p>

<p>Sorry, Just realized the mistake in the post above.</p>

<p>Meant to write:</p>

<p>"Recently, a couple of people reported getting into Stern with lower GPAs (maybe close to your GPA) and high standardized scores in the 2200+ range. So your situation is NOT impossible but I would say the other parts of your application should be extra strong to compensate for the lower GPA."</p>

<p>Evolving is pretty much spot on. I had a 3.8 weighted, which is pretty low, and I still got into Stern with 2230 SAT and 33 ACT. SAT II were 740 MATH II and 700 Bio-M... I think ECs are important, and can support less-than-amazing statistics, but they will not make up for it.</p>

<p>Thanks for all the replies. Makes me feel a little better :)</p>

<p>Another question: How important is an upward trend for GPA? I bombed both freshman and sophomore year (got almost all Bs because I was lazy as hell), and half of junior year because I was aimless and didn't really have any goals for the future. However, for the second half of junior year, I decided to work really hard, and now I should be ending with mostly As. Do you think NYU will be forgiving of my low GPA if I show that I improved a lot in junior year and mention the growth in my essay?</p>

<p>PiesAreDelic,</p>

<p>Thank God you are going in the right direction - up rather than down in GPA trend.</p>

<p>You have the right idea. This should be a central theme in your essay, if not the central theme. Your growth in awareness, motivation, goal-directed behavior. If written well, it can be a powerful statement of your, maybe even what can be described as, "precocious" growth.</p>

<p>Why do I say that? Some students do in college what you have done in HS to grow and explore (sometimes aimlessly) until they find themselves and their "purpose in life" or a career they are really dedicated to. Alas, some do not even find themselves in college or even grad school. It may take years of life experience to get them to a point of commitment to a career path (if ever for some, :( ).</p>

<p>So your awareness of yourself and your recently found dedicated focus (with a concomitant significant improvement in grades) can only help you. However, it is key that you write about this in a very cogent and convincing manner in your essay.</p>

<p>In your essay, it's better to SHOW growth than to just write say you grew. Keep in mind that a lot of people talk about growth in their essay so it's important to make sure you keep your essay original and creative.</p>