UPDATED: My chances for these med-ivy league schools?

<p>Basic info: I am a hispanic male senior in high school looking to apply to:</p>

<p>Virginia Tech
Carnegie Mellon
Johns Hopkins
University of Virginia
UPenn </p>

<p>I would be the first in my family to go to college; indeed I am the first person in my family born in the US. These two facts I cannot help but feel may have deprived me of knowledge regarding college and school that would have been mighty useful to have.</p>

<p>I want to study electrical or chemical engineering, or mathematics.</p>

<p>Though my high school career has in some ways been unremarkable I have some other things going for me that I hope will help me stand out.</p>

<p>*My first two years of high school (and German I and Algebra I that I took in 8th grade) were average, with mostly A's and B's, and C's in Algebra I and Geometry.
*My class rank in junior year (so with my previous grades) was 121 of about 750.</p>

<p>However, I made decent improvement starting off modestly in 10th grade and really getting going in junior year.</p>

<p><em>After getting Cs two years in a row in math (not to make excuses but I believe partially effected by uncomfortable circumstances at home) I somehow rekindled my earlier passion for math. I took Algebra 2 with trig in 10th grade, pre-calc the summer after, calculus AB in 11th grade (could not take BC because of scheduling conflicts, to my dismay), and am currently one of the 8 people in my school taking Differential Equations. I passed all these classes with As, got a 5 on the calc ab ap test, and currently have around a 95% average in diff eq's.
*</em>*My class rank has shot up from 121/750 to 67/635.
*My weighted GPA is 3.9, unweighted 3.5 (a common complaint in my class is of the old grading scale, in which anything under a 94% was a B, and so forth; but it is what it is)
*I am one of four or five National Merit Semifinalists in my school (waiting to see if I am a Finalist), a National AP Scholar, and have won recognition in the National Hispanic Recognition Program with 2 other people.
*My junior year I finished with straight A's (not huge but at least an improvement).
*I have taken one AP sophomore year and four junior year, and am currently taking 5.</p>

<p>Test scores:
PSAT: don't remember sophomore year, but junior year: 221
SAT I: First try, 2200 (700/760/740); second try, 2220 (740/730/750); sum of best scores: 2250
SAT II: US History: 780; English Literature: 770
AP World History: 5
AP US History: 5
AP Calculus AB: 5
AP Music Theory: 3
AP English Language & Composition: 5</p>

<p>Additional stuff:
*I won a small local scholarship for Hispanic students.
*I took a short fencing course when I was about 8
*I was in all-city band as a clarinetist for two years.
*I am in the AATG National German Honors Society and am President of the German Club.
*I don't have many volunteer hours. A few during snowmageddon to help neighbors shovel snow, and about 6 over the last summer for an event to let people volunteer for our city.
*I have played in the pit band for a school performance of Rent.
*I have played extensively with my rock bands my entire high school career. We have played at least over 50 gigs for our school, booking agencies, talent shows, festivals, charity events (Haiti), private parties/events; notable places we have played include the Rock N' Roll Hotel and 9:30 Club (where we will be playing again soon). I am a guitarist in both bands and have invested a sizable amount of time into practicing, writing, performing, etc.
*I am currently taking AP Physics C (Mechanics now, E&M next sem), AP Eng. Lit, AP US Gov, and AP German, electronics II and Diff Eq's.</p>

<p>I don't feel like I have much going for me except maybe test scores or my improvement, so if anybody could proffer any advice, I'd much appreciate it.</p>

<p>Virginia Tech
Carnegie Mellon
Johns Hopkins
University of Virginia
UPenn </p>

<p>I don't know what you mean by bad test scores. A 2220 as your best is great.
I feel like you have a great chance at VA Tech and UVA. Vandy will be a little tough, but being Hispanic helps as does being out of state which I'm assuming you are (A large amount ofTN schools are 93 and below for an A).
Yale will be a reach, but it is for basically everyone. From personal knowledge (my dad and ex went there), they really value community involvement so that might hurt you a little bit with the lack of hours, but I feel like being in those bands and playing for charity events and such will definitely stand out to admission counselors.
The others I don't know enough about to comment on, but you have an amazing application!</p>

<p>Whoops didn't delete that list. I put it in my comment so I didn't have to keep scrolling up really far to read the list. haha</p>

<p>Agreed...just boost your GPA and I think you have a good shot at VT and UVA.</p>

<p>Thanks very much! You're right about my test scores; everything less than a 2400 just seems low after looking at score percentiles for ivy leagues. Would you have any colleges to recommend.</p>

<p>p.s. I do the same lol</p>

<p>Your applying to a lot of med tier Virginia schools, so I'm assuming you live in Virginia. If thats the case then you are in at JMU, GMU, and VTech. UVA would be a match. Otherwise if OOS you are still probably in at JMU and GMU and VTech would be a match and UVA a high match. </p>

<p>Now for your reaches, you have two decent hooks, scores are in range while not exceptional, but still good. GPA and rank are a little weak though and ECs are average at best. You are still fairly competitive as an applicant and your hooks will definitely help, especially at the more holistic schools</p>

<p>Thanks! I hate to get optimistic knowing the chances for some of those schools are low no matter what, but I think i'll try anyway. Most people seem to think I have a good shot for UVA -- I hope they're right! Do you have any colleges you'd recommend?</p>

<p>You show a really great progression in classes and grades that will look great to colleges. I think you have a strong shot at all except Penn, Yale and Swat. While these are not impossible, they take so few not in their class' top 10% and have their pick of top URMs, so they will be very tough.</p>

<p>Thanks, I don't expect to get into ivy leages but figure I might try anyway, though I didn't know swat was <em>that</em> selective also.</p>

<p>I think you are in at UVA, VT and maybe JHU.
I think you should drop Swarthmore from your list and add U. Rochester.
Rochester has engineering and a great music program. I don't know if you want to continue with music.
If you are interested in engineering: Lehigh, Rochester, CWRU, RPI, and Georgia Tech are other ideas. </p>

<p>Swarthmore is one of the top LACs in the country. It ranks with Pomona and Amherst.
It doesn't sound like a fit based on your interest in engineering.</p>

<p>Good luck with you college search.</p>