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Chances: ED Legacy vs Northwestern vs BC vs Georgetown

ivydaddyivydaddy Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
edited December 2009 in University of Pennsylvania
My kid wants to go to Penn more than anything. I went to grad school there.
She was told by her counselor to apply ED to Northwestern because she has a better chance of getting in. I say, apply ED to Penn if its your first choice, but she feels that she has little chance of getting in.
GPA 4.06 (includes 2 APs, Weighted) taking 5 APs this year.
SAT 700 M 710 CR 800 Writing SAT II pending
Class rank Private School in the South, doesn't rank
Academic Awards: School Book award (11)
APs Art Hist 5
Eng Lit 4

ECs: Captain of Rowing team (Varsity letter 9,10,11) State 2nd place (10), 3d place US Rowing National Meet (11) Assume no recruiting action, they only recruit a handful.
Debate (9,10,11) Won a few top speaker awards
Beta Club
Some volunteer work

Those are the highights, what do you think?
Post edited by ivydaddy on

Replies to: Chances: ED Legacy vs Northwestern vs BC vs Georgetown

  • bluewindbluewind Registered User Posts: 384 Member
    Why not ED Penn? First of all, if you apply ED Legacy to Penn, your chances are improved significantly right off the bat. The SATs are fine enough for your daughter to be considered carefully. Plus, her commitment to rowing is an unusual talent that I'm sure Penn would love. Does she really love Northwestern? If she is accepted there, she might regret having to give up her dreams of going to Penn. If she really loves it at Penn, go for it. (Don't take my advice only. See what others say first, and then make a decision. Deciding which college to go to is a life-changing experience; you need as much insight as you can get.) Oh, and tell her to rock her essay.
  • necrophiliacnecrophiliac Registered User Posts: 1,061 Senior Member
    When you consider Upenn's admission rate is something like 30% or higher for ED + legacy whereas Northwestern is about 25% (no legacy) and GTown is a 17% (no legacy) it seems upenn is the clear choice in more than just sentiment.

    I suggest ED upenn and then bombing like 5-7 "good" to "reach" schools for regular in case upenn goes sour. Ofc have 1 safety.

    By the way, you shouldn't listen to counselors. If they knew what they were doing, they wouldn't be working as counselors.

    And last thought: college is not a prize to be won but a match to be made. If Northwestern isn't her type of school, regardless of admission, she shouldn't go there.
  • ivydaddyivydaddy Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    Thank You!. Your advice is spot on. The counselors at her school scare the dickins out of the kids, so they feel lucky to get into any school. Your advice is very helpful.
  • ivydaddyivydaddy Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    On the other hand, the GPA is out of 4.33 plus extra for AP and honors. The average accepted at Penn from her school is 4.4. The class VD is 4.89 this year.
    This board is pretty, pretty, pretty helpful!
  • JHSJHS Registered User Posts: 17,992 Senior Member
    I am not certain the counselor is wrong at all. Northwestern and Penn are very similar colleges -- someone who likes one really should like the other. Northwestern's overall acceptance rate is more than twice Penn's though (29% vs. 14%), and its ED acceptance rate this year was 40% (vs. 31% at Penn). The OP's daughter's best chance of getting into Penn may be an ED application, but I suspect that "best chance" may be pretty low unless she improves her SATs meaningfully or gets recruited to row.. Lots and lot of qualified legacies apply ED to Penn, and many get deferred or rejected. Her SAT scores probably put her into a category where her chances are average at best at both colleges. (They are fine scores, of course, but probably below the median of the admitted pool at both colleges, especially if one discounts the writing component, as many colleges do.)

    Now, Northwestern's ED program is relatively small (25% of the class, vs. almost 50% at Penn; Penn admits twice as many kids ED than Northwestern, for similar-sized overall classes). That probably explains why there is much less of a difference ibetween Northwetern's ED and RD admit rates than there is with Penn, and it counsels caution. On the other hand, Northwetern's ED admit rate is probably free of noise from athletic recruiting, which is folded into Penn's ED program to an extent that is probably significant and that makes the ED admission rate look much higher than it is for non-recruits. I am going to guess that if you really did the analysis you would find that the Northwestern ED admit rate is close to twice Penn's for non-recruited athletes.

    The daughter has a much better chance of ultimately getting into Northwestern (or Georgetown, or BC) compared to Penn. But all of them are probably reaches (BC perhaps a little less so, especially if she brings geographical underrepresentation to the table). She can apply ED to Penn if she wants, but she should probably be concentrating on figuring out where to apply that she can comfortably get in and that she would like to attend if none of these others comes through.
  • ivydaddyivydaddy Registered User Posts: 5 New Member
    Accepted U Penn. Overwhelming joy!
This discussion has been closed.