What are my chances of getting into RPI (and what other schools do I have a shot at???

I have had a rough start to highschool, with extreme depression and anxiety, where I had a 3.0 GPA unweighted in 9th grade, moved on to a 4.0 in 10th grade and around a 3.7 11th grade. My current SAT score is a 1330-1350. I took several APs and multiple honors classes. It’s estimated that my cumulative GPA over high school should be a 3.6.

EC and Awards. I am the Vice President of Poetry and President of Photography club at my school. I have volunteered at a farm, I spent over 300 hours designing and participating in a construction of a sauna, and planning its thermodynamics. I helped at the Tufts University Veterinary Department in cleaning equipment and doing other tasks. I started my own photography business and was paid for a variety of things. I would shoot commercial and fashion photos for a online editorial and for clients. I learned to micro manage funds and money, plan accordingly for clients, and master creating legal papers. I learned to be acutely skilled in Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom, and other programs necessary to edit photography and retouch clients. I was assessed in the National Latin exam and I placed in the top fifteen percent of the test takers, and received an award. I partake frequently in my high school’s newspaper.

Sports. Alpine Ski Racing (qualified for Nationals and Regionals several times) (outside of high school sports)
JV Cross Country in 10th grade.

What in particular interests you about RPI? What are you hoping to study?

RPI is known as a particularly intense environment - possibly emotionally challenging for someone who has struggled with depression and anxiety. There is skiing not too far away in Vermont, it isn’t necessarily optimized for access as compared to some other schools. Your stats are in the bottom quartile for admitted students there. You have interesting and varied EC’s, but they seem a bit different from the passions of a lot of RPI students. What about this school particularly appeals to you?

How are you doing in math, both the scores and grades? Thats the biggest predictor of success at RPI, strong math skills, and exposure to calculus. So if your Bs are in humanities and social sciences, that may be OK, for RPI but if you have Bs in math, you will have to work harder to keep up at RPI.

Look at RIT. Its offers photography, and optical sciences, in case you want a minor or major in that,
as well as strong engineering curriculums in many of the same areas as RPI.
It may be easier going than RPI, in that RIT students score lower in math, for the most part compared to RPI’s student body, and Rochester is nicer than Troy, but you will need a car in upstate NY, to get to skiing or even into Rochester, as RIT is in an outlining area of Rochester.

RIT is a great suggestion.

Even more out-of-the-box (particularly having no clear idea where you’re from or what you want to study), I was thinking of the excellent and innovative Honors College at the University of Utah, where the best skiing in the country is literally half an hour from campus. http://uteathletics.com/skiing/index.html In addition to very solid science and engineering programs, there are excellent photography and design programs, as well as business-y stuff, a system of student-run Edible Campus Gardens, and a variety of themed, year-long Praxis Projects within the Honors College. https://honors.utah.edu/ It seems as if everything you love to do would be at your fingertips there. (Also, re: STEM and poetry: http://www.sci.utah.edu/~nmccurdy/rhymeDesign/ )

RPI’s bio/chemistry programs I actually find really great. I live in Massachusetts. (Im not too keen on skiing in college). I have done B+ and A-s in math over the years. Since I plan on Chemistry or Biology… would they be more leaneant on my math? Also… (my sister was an graduate here… idk if that would help at all). I wonder if i should apply early decision… would that help my chances of getting in?

If a small university in a (very) small town is okay, look at Alfred University (Western NY state) alfred.edu. Known for its art and engineering schools, it also has a school of business and a liberal arts & sciences college. Ski mountains are 1/2 hour to 1 hour away. They have a ski team. Also, look at the University of New Hampshire, unh.edu and Clarkson University, clarkson.edu.

Schools rarely consider siblings in admission (parents/grandparents maybe, not siblings from what I heard).
From the standpoint of getting in, telling your story about personal achievements may help, no harm in trying.

But as far as it being the right school for you, anxiety and depression would be a challenge to overcome at any college, maybe worse at an intense school like RPI, but a challenge anywhere. I would work on ways to reduce anxiety during your senior year, no matter where you go. Check out this website https://angstmovie.com/
I just saw a screening of this movie, if it is playing near you, worth seeing.

Well, your grades have trended upward, and your weighted GPA is probably pretty good. If your SAT is higher on the math side, RPI could be within reach, particularly if you’re female. Would it be affordable without merit money? On the need based aid side, they do not necessarily meet full need. If you’re sure your family can afford it without merit $ (and presumably they’re familiar with the costs because of your sister) and you’re truly sure that it’s your first choice, then applying Early Decision may improve your odds of getting in.

Definitely take a close look at your other options, though, before you settle on a single top-choice school. If you want a small, STEM-focused college, Clarkson is a great suggestion, as well as RIT and WPI. U of Rochester has top-notch STEM too. Stevens looks like a near-perfect fit for your stats: https://www.stevens.edu/schaefer-school-engineering-science/departments/chemistry-chemical-biology/undergraduate-programs/chemical-biology NJIT could be a good safety. https://chemistry.njit.edu/academics/undergraduate/bs-biochemistry.php

A little farther away, Rose-Hulman has many of the same attributes as RPI, but smaller and more personalized. It’s an easier admit, to a large extent because of its rural Indiana location, but it has a terrific hands-on approach and an enthusiastic, engaged group of students. https://www.rose-hulman.edu/academics/academic-departments/chemistry-and-biochemistry/index.html

Even farther from home (but closer to skiing!), you might want to check out Colorado School of Mines. It’s a top-notch small STEM school with a close-knit student body and lots of wonderful traditions, in a gorgeous natural environment. In addition to the biochemistry track of chem, it has environmental chem, biological engineering, materials engineering - many fascinating programs at the intersection of chem and life sciences https://chemistry.mines.edu/ Mines’ stat profile is a little lower than RPI’s, but its acceptance rate is also lower - it’s a popular school for good reason.

Also, if an environmentally-focused school would interest you, a highly-regarded and affordable hidden gem in upstate NY is SUNY ESF, which is adjacent to Syracuse University and gives its students cross-registration privileges at Syracuse (which incidentally has fantastic programs in Photography and Art Photography as well as one of the top fashion design programs if continuing to photograph fashion stuff is an interest) as well as having terrific programs in its own right. In addition to the biochemistry program http://www.esf.edu/chemistry/biochemistry.htm , they have Biotechnology, Bioprocess Engineering, Environmental Chem, and a specialty program in Natural & Synthetic Polymer Chemistry.

Hope that helps! If you consider the whole range of options and decide that RPI is your best fit, then express lots of interest and apply ED.

Stevens Institute of Tech is fabulous for many majors. The location is very urban in Hoboken NJ with direct access in ten minutes to Manhattan. Its an exciting place to live. ! Its easy to take a train from Boston to Grand Central Station
and take a PATH train to Stevens Institute.

Case Western and Carlton college have a check box for siblings got in and did well. The reason is, they are in towns that are not popular as college towns, and siblings are likely to be familiar with the pitfalls of the locations! Cleveland and super cold Northfield MN. I would suspect that siblings may help a little for RPI but I don’t know.
Since OP wants to study biology or chemistry Case Western may be a good fit, as well as other schools in Massachusetts like Tufts, which is tough to get in, but maybe holistic, or Brandeis U.

I don’t see RIT as being as good as RPI for chemistry and biology. RPI has a good program to study Lake George,
the health of the water systems in New York State, if that is of interest. RPI is strong in physics as well.

I do not like Colorado School of Mines so much as its chemistry is more focused on a geochemistry course and offers less biology than most traditional chemistry and biochemistry departments, yet it is small and student focused. Class size is small.

Like very good engineering college, they are trying to get moving in BME but not succeeding all that well, so far. Its not a match unless OP wants to be in the oil and gas industry or wants to attend graduate school, it may be good preparation in that its teaching focused while still having some significant research dollars in a few areas. Mechanical engineering is very very good at Mines. Materials science struggles and is stuck as a metallurgy school with one ceramics expert, so its not well rounded in materials science so much.

. Also the job connections at Mines are somewhat weak lately and some grads are struggling to get jobs out of Mines. A key employer of Mines graduates is Lockheed Martin in Littleton Colorado. Also Ball Aerospace in Boulder and Broomfield CO.

The Petroleum industry is flat, for now, in Texas and Colorado but still hiring if the OP wants to be in that industry and live in Texas, and travel to inspect wells in Wyoming or work for a mining company in Montana, Mines might fit.

Mines is not yet, the all a general purpose tech school, it still focused on its core competencies of geology, geophysics and geochemistry.
While there is work with photovoltaics, and NREL in Golden, the main guy who did that retired, and we see that a few top Mines faculty get frustrated and hired away by CU Boulder. Thats mainly in the math and computer areas, though, not chemistry.

Golden is a nice small town, in the foothills, though, good access to Denver and the mountains. For someone who suffers some anxiety I don’t recommend Colorado in general, as the altitudes here make it harder to sleep as well.

Rose Hullman is very very strong in chemical engineering. Its on a quarter calendar and in a small town but you can fly in and out of Indianapolis and bus over. The campus offers a lake and matching brick buildings and surprisingly liberal feel! I was pleasantly surprised by Rose Hullman and chemistry is top notch there, I believe, if you can stand to be in Terre Haute Indiana. Also Rose will meet you one on one if you do have time to visit the campus. They make a big effort on visit programs and they are worth visiting. Some merit money available there, its a private school, as I remember.

To clarify, the aerospace industry recruits heavily at Mines but almost never chemistry majors. Chemistry majors get recruited by oil and gas at Mines, in general, but also in wind energy and photovoltaics. Unfortunately Colorado has gotten out of photovoltaics after General Electric bought one supplier, for the most part. Vestas, the Danish windmill company is very strong in Colorado though and Mines grads do get jobs there, but not so much chemistry majors. Mechanical engineering is king at Mines, the kingpin major, after petroleum engineering.