What does Harvey Mudd Look for in students exactly? What looks great and stands out in their pool?

obviously I get that they want students who can meet the demands of their super difficult classes, but what are some things to do to set one apart from the other applicants?

There isn’t a magic formula. Most accepted students are strong across all the key elements of the application. Have you visited? Fit is important, it is a relatively small and tight-knit community. They need to be able to see from your app that you understand Mudd and are a good fit.

Agreed, fit is definitely important…

Someone on another thread posted this link: https://www.hmc.edu/admission/counselor-page/

It states:

At HMC, there are two main considerations when we review students. We look for “fit.” We hope that the student can articulate the desire to attend HMC for the process of the education and for the community, more than simply the product of this fabulous education. We also look for ways in which the student plans to contribute to the college.

The other critical consideration is each student’s preparation for the intensity of HMC. We pay particular attention to the rigor of courses completed, grades, test scores, and the student’s attitude toward learning. Here are some specific factors we weigh extremely heavily:…