Thing 1, Thing 2, Now What Do?

<p>Alright CC, I've reached a lull in my activities and am requesting your collective wisdom. I've recently done two things that have changed my stats enough that I would like any input on what I've done, what I'm aiming for, and what I can do. And anything else you can think of.</p>

<p>Grade: 11th
Summarized College List: MIT, some ivies, Rice, RPI, Carnegie Mellon, Purdue, V Tech
Ethnicity/Gender: White/Male
School type: Bad public</p>

<p>Thing No. 1 (Bad): (Relatively) Poor standardized test scores (carelessness and lack of preparation)</p>

<p>PSAT: 207 (71 CR, 67 M, 69 W)
SAT: 2170 (2nd time, 730 CR, 690 M, 750 W)
SAT II: US History - 700</p>

<p>Thing No. 2 (Good): Winner of National Student Spaceflight Experiments Program for the second year in a row</p>

<p>Last year, I helped my team design an experimental proposal that won and flew aboard STS-135 (experiment failed due to asphyxiation of samples). </p>

<p>This year, I submitted a solo proposal that won again. I (tentatively) will be able to work in a National Institute of Health Lab and publish my results (I'm working with authors of papers of similar spaceflight experiments to ensure validity of my results and help analyze resulting data).</p>

<p>Other Stats (Objective): 3.97, Val/300, US History (5), Bio (5, self), US Gov (5, self), Env Sci (4, self), 5 AP classes this year and several self-studies, 1st (10th) and 2nd (9th) in County Science Fair, AP Scholar w/Distinction, successfully lobbied for change in county-wide grade weighting policy for a set of courses.</p>

<p>Other Stats (Subjective):
ECs: Math Team (2nd in county), MESA (1st in county, team captain), It's Academic (3rd in county), Varsity Swimming (Coaches Award), VP of Class, Key Club (President 2 years), SMART Team (Presented at American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Poster Session, local university, and technology conference [won $500 at last one]), Computer Bowl (Team Captain two years).</p>

<p>Community Service: 170+ hours
Work: Nursery for over a year, babysitting, tutoring.</p>

<p>Does Thing No. 2 count as a "hook"? I'm aiming for God-tier schools and am discouraged because of my poor test scores. </p>

<p>Summer programs and IxOs are just about the only thing I can do (please tell me if there're other options!), but I've never done an IxO or AIME. I'm reasonably confident in my study/self-teaching skills (AP Bio in 2 weeks), but I would only be able to do one IxO and AIME (AIME is the Math competition, right? AMC 10?), if that. Should I even bother looking into IxOs? Is there any other way to prepare for AIME other than doing previous tests on AoPS?</p>

<p>What are some of the summer programs I could look at? I'm not going to bother applying to RSI with a 67 M PSAT and that's the only program I know of. </p>

<p>Any input is appreciated. Thanks for taking the time to read all of this!</p>

<p>I would recommend Clark Scholars. I am applying for it this year (I'm going to start my essays next week after finishing homework). They are very selective but hardly care about PSAT scores, even though they ask for them. </p>

<p>That or just use personal connections or contact a local university.</p>