Will I get into Columbia?

international student

  • IB school
  • female

English major

GPA, Rank, and Test Scores

  • Unweighted HS GPA: 8.3/10 (my school is very tough)
  • my school doesn’t weigh GPAs, but we have 7 IB courses and 6 non-IB courses
  • ACT Score: 33

• IB Diploma:
HL English A Language and Literature, Biology, History (predicted 7/6/6)
SL Math, [native language], [my country Social Studies] (predicted 5/5/6)

  • my school took the non-exam route so I’m gonna request a reevaluation bc I feel like my math score should’ve been higher

A letter from the State gov’t congratulating me for my work in my NGO, a nomination for a leadership award, and I’m currently in the rounds for a Continent-wide UNICEF event but idk if I’m a finalist yet

I founded and lead an NGO to combat period poverty,
I teach English to underprivileged children,
I’m a counselor at a Jewish youth educational movement,
have a published poetry book,
I’m a United Nations Girl Up club leader,
and a volunteer at a UNICEF youth volunteer program.
I’ve also done MUN,
and I’m the copy editor for my school newspaper.
I do 4 hours of ballet a week,
and I play the piano.
Finally, I’m trying to secure an internship at the State government!

haven’t done them yet but I know they need to be strong

Cost Constraints / Budget
i won’t be applying for FA


  • Safety
    • American University
    • George Washington
    • UCSB
    • Wake Forest
  • Match
    • Boston College
    • UNC Chapel Hill
    • Boston University
  • Reach
    • UC Berkeley
    • UCLA
    • Georgetown
    • Barnard
    • Cornell
  • Hard Reach
    • Brown
    • Columbia (ED)

I can’t chance you because I’m a current hs student, but you seem like a pretty remarkable candidate. Good luck with everything!!!

As an international student your chances will be slimmer than your American counterparts. You’ll also be evaluated against other applicants from your country and your school.


Here’s the thing: you are an international student. As a rule of thumb take the overall acceptance rate for any given US university and figure that 8-14% of those accepted will be international students.

Does your school have experience sending students to the US? If so, you may have some direct info as to how students from your school typically fare at the unis on your list. Otherwise, I don’t see any of the universities that you list as safeties as real safeties, esp Wake Forest. UNC has a hard cap of 18% OOS students, and that includes recruited athletes, so it is a harder admit than it might look.

Aside from mostly being unis with names that people are likely to have heard of at home, what drew you to this particular list of names? What do you want from your US college experience, and do you have post-college goals? I’m struggling to see commonalities.

Your IB predictions are strong, though (imo) IB doesn’t get as much credit as it deserves.

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Admissions is generally more difficult for international students. I do not know whether being full pay would make any schools safeties for you. I would be tempted to add two safeties in your home country.

How do your grades compare with other students in your high school?

Your list is very top heavy. You do have a strong college application list of things, but really, the only safety I see is American and that is only if you show genuine interest in American University.

I think your school list is really mostly reaches for an international student…but apply and see.

Will you get accepted to Columbia? Well…the very vast majority of applicants are not accepted but you have as good a chance as any other applicant. So apply and see. It might work out.

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Thank you!!!

Hey! My school doesn’t rank. I’m a UNC legacy and my school is relatively new but has some experience sending out students :slight_smile:

Honestly, thank you! :slight_smile: And yeah, it’s a really tough school but your reply calms me down somewhat

I have genuine interest in these universities, esp. my top 5s! I won’t be writing it all down in here hahah but they are institutions I genuinely see myself thriving in. I want to apply for English and/ or PoliSci, generally in a bigger city although it’s not a defining factor for me, to a university that will grant me the opportunities I need to research and grow in my fields :slight_smile:

Would your school consider you a star? a superstar? You don’t have to answer here! the point is that that’s the kind of stats (your school might not rank, but their school profile will make it pretty clear where you are on the bell curve) and LoR you need.

Fwiw, Cornell is not within shouting distance of any size city at all. Pretty much any university in the top 100 will “grant” you more opportunities to research / grow in most fields than you can take advantage of.

lmao hahaha i know, cornell is a bit of an outlier but i love the university and have been researching it a lot lately!

You are a good applicant, but there is too much risk with your list. Agree with @thumper1 that American is your only true safety, and even that may not go your way.

From the information given, I think you have a small pile in the maybe/maybe not category - GW, Wake, BU and maybe UCSB (but that might be a hair harder IMO). All the rest are reaches, even BC.

Good luck! Sorry, but Columbia is very unlikely. Possibly being a UNC legacy makes it another 50/50.