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Out of State Chances at Honors College

2buddies2buddies Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
My son is a rising senior and will apply before November 1. He has had his heart set on UMd since competing in National History Day on the campus in 8th grade. Finances will determine whether Maryland remains on the list. What are your thoughts on acceptance into the Honors College and Banneker/ Key Scholarship?

He attends a highly competitive district wide program for academically gifted high school students with dual enrollment on a local college campus. SAT 1910 super scored and ACT 30. Taking both again this fall.

11 APs with minimum score of 3 majority 4/5
AP Scholar with Distinction
15 dual enrollment college courses totaling 45 hours college credit
300+ hours community service so far
President of Student Body
Jr Marshall
Yearbook Editor
Various academic honor societies
US Senate Youth Scholarship Program rep from our state
State National History Day winner since 8th grade
Competed in National History Day competition at College Park 3 times
Various other clubs including History Club and Key and Scroll
Works part time job as cashier and customer service leader 20 hours/ wk
Possible Communications/ Public Relations major with Poli Sci minor.

Appreciate any insight you can provide.

Replies to: Out of State Chances at Honors College

  • 2buddies2buddies Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
    Forgot to mentioned 3.78 GPA.
  • jiblerjibler Registered User Posts: 1,604 Senior Member
    edited August 2014
    I am an incoming freshman, and I got into the Honors College from out-of-state this past year. Honestly, your son seems to be a great student and person with good stats overall. However, UMD is very numbers driven, and if there's anything that will prevent your son from getting into the Honors College, it's because of his test scores at the moment. What is your son's two-part score (Math + Critical Reading)? If your son can retake the SAT or ACT, I would aim for a 1400 two-part score or a 32 ACT.

    I do think your son has a good shot at the Scholars program (and even though Honors gets first dibs on the "top applicants", both are great programs and being accepted into either is a great achievement and opportunity).

    Also, I had great extracurriculars like your son, but I was not considered for the Banneker Key with a 32/33 ACT. Candidates usually go to those with scores higher than such.
  • spidermom03spidermom03 Registered User Posts: 40 Junior Member
    My son is an incoming freshman to the Honors College. While it does appear to be largely numbers driven, I also think that it can be very difficult to predict who will be admitted to the Honors College, and nearly impossible to predict who will be awarded a partial or full Banneker Key. We are in-state and my son had an SAT (CR + M) of 1500+, a 3.96 unweighted GPA (5.45 weighted), and 11 AP classes and tests (all 5's and 2 4's). He had good EC's (sports, community service, various clubs/organizations, etc) and did a research internship at a major university. He had classmates with nearly identical stats and activities who were not admitted to either Honors or Scholars. My son was not considered for the Banneker Key either. He knows a few kids from other schools who were offered the Banneker Key - the scores were all over the place - some higher than his, but many lower.
  • SoofDadSoofDad Registered User Posts: 910 Member
    @spidermom03 - You are correct. My D is also an incoming Honors College freshman and she has a classmate won got a full ride Banneker Key scholarship with a SAT score below 1300. This is a student that I know personally. There was another student on here who said that she also got a full ride with and SAT below 1300. Predictions are a tricky thing.
  • amiableamiable Registered User Posts: 36 Junior Member
    edited August 2014
    If it helps for comparison purposes, my son is also an entering freshman at UMD this fall. We are from out-of-state as well. He was accepted into the Honors College and the Clark School of Engineering (will be majoring in aerospace engineering). He was awarded a Presidential Scholarship of $12K per year. He was NOT, however, considered for the Banneker/Key scholarship.

    He attended a small private independent school for academically gifted students in grades 7-12 which was located on a college campus, allowing for dual enrollment.

    His stats were:

    3.94/4.0 GPA unweighted (his high school doesn't weight)
    ACT score: 35 (with subscores of 35 Science, English, Reading and Writing and 34 Math)
    He didn't submit his SAT score, but it was 2170
    8 APs with scores of 5 on all
    AP Scholar with Distinction
    National Merit Commended Scholar
    Dual enrollment college courses taken through his high school + Additional college courses taken at a local university (for a total of 50 incoming college credits)
    Cum Laude Society (the national scholastic honor society for independent private schools)
    Highest Honors Roll every semester for 6 years
    Received academic awards for excellence in math, history, English, classical languages and science
    Summa Cum Laude/Gold Medal Award on National Latin Exam three years in a row
    Proconsul of entire Student Body for senior year (it was the same as president; his school just calls it this instead)
    Vice-president of his class for freshman, sophomore and junior years
    Delegate to Harvard Model Congress for three years in a row
    HOBY delegate from his school
    Selected to attend a competitive summer engineering program at our state university
    Performed in a number of the school's drama productions and musicals and received awards; also served as head of the technical crew for school assemblies and other productions
    Member of the soccer team
    Certified Grade 8 soccer referee for our town's recreational and travel leagues for 4 years
    More than 200 hours of community service
    Works part-time as a grill cook at McDonald's (aprox. 18 hours/week)

    My advice to you would be to have your son apply by Nov. 1 and just wait and see. It's kind of a crapshoot, I think. It's hard to predict because the applicant pool is different every year. But it's worth a shot.

    (As a side note--my son also became enamoured of UMD because of National History Day. But it was his older brother who competed instead!)
  • RoscoeDashRoscoeDash Registered User Posts: 45 Junior Member
    I'm just gonna throw out there that it's not that hard to get into the Honors program and test scores aren't a factor.

    We were told specifically at orientation that test scores are NOT a factor. Something like 1/8 students get into honors.

    For Banneker/Key, test scores only matter to get you in the door. Anybody who has above a ~1870 can be considered if they have good essays and significant financial need.

    People on this site stress test scores way too much, it's annoying, because they're misinformed and fueled a lot of my misconceptions and nervousness last year. It's a state school, a good one, but a state school. You don't have to be a God to get in/get into honors.
  • jiblerjibler Registered User Posts: 1,604 Senior Member
    edited August 2014
    I believe it's tougher if you're out-of-state. I have multiple friends with similar stats to OP who didn't even get accepted into the Engineering program, let alone Honors. I was told top 10% of applicants are accepted into Honors. And of course, not everyone who is offered decides to enroll.

    Still though, even if you are correct, no one can be so sure since admissions can be unpredictable.
  • 2buddies2buddies Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
    Thanks for all of the comments. He will apply by November 1 and see what happens!
  • MitchKreybenMitchKreyben Registered User Posts: 439 Member
    One more example. My D got into honors with 29 act, 4.2 weighted gpa , and I.B. diploma. She's out of state. Didn't get the exact honors emphasis she wanted....but was thrilled to get Honors, period. So in this case test score probably didn't help her, but maybe she's geographically diverse (way out in flyover country). It really is a bit of a crap shoot. We think the IB thing is a diff-maker.
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