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Can you comment on what it takes to get admitted to McCombs?

spectrum2spectrum2 Registered User Posts: 1,295 Senior Member
My S is a Junior and is interested in going to McCombs or Mays(TAMU). His current rank is about the top 4-5% of his class. Its hard to tell what it will do in the next semester. From what I understand it usually takes being in the top 3% to get automatic admission to McCombs. I'm wondering if it is possible for a freshman to get admitted if they aren't in the top 3% of their class or even if that 3% number is accurate. I tried to look this up on the web site but either I didn't look in the right place or they don't state it all that clearly. Thanks for the information!
Post edited by spectrum2 on

Replies to: Can you comment on what it takes to get admitted to McCombs?

  • bombazobombazo Registered User Posts: 136 Junior Member
    of course he can be admitted.

    top 3% students might get automatic acceptance but that doesnt mean they are the only accepted students.

    I´ve heard that 3.7 to 3.8 gpa is the average gpa for McCombs, so if your son has a good GPA , good SAT, and good rank (he already has) he will have no trouble getting admitted.

    McCombs is one of the most selective schools in UT.

    he can get rejected in McCombs but accepted in his second choice major and transfer internally after a year or so.

    good luck
  • spectrum2spectrum2 Registered User Posts: 1,295 Senior Member
    Thanks Bombazo, I think his GPA is in range but I don't know about SAT's, his first sitting will be March, but I am expecting, less than stellar scores. Do you have any idea what sort of range would be considered a "good" score. Maybe the question is what sort of score would be acceptable. I expect 1200's but 1100's or 1300's are a possibility. 1400's I expect are out of reach without a major study effort...and some luck :). From what I understand transferring into McCombs requires a near perfect Freshman GPA. I expect if it came down to that he would probably go to Mays, (which he liked when he visited), if he wasn't admitted to McCombs as a freshman. If he did get admitted to both I expect he would take a closer look at both schools to make a choice.
  • PriscillablairPriscillablair Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
    I wouldn't say that he will have no trouble getting in with good stats. People with amazing stats get turned down all the time.
    I was admitted into McCombs for the fall of 2011 and I would say that leadership and consistency play a huge part in an acceptance from McCombs. I wouldn't say that I have stellar stats, but I do come from a school that is a favorite of UT (a suburb north of Houston, if you're wondering).
    My stats were:
    SAT: 1980
    ACT: 32
    Rank: 48/916 (top 5.24%)
    GPA Unweighted: 3.9636
    GPA Weighted: 4.6545
    Leadership: 3 years as an editor for yearbook
    Board member for DECA
    Leadership Academy at DECA ICDC
    Extracurriculars: NHS, SNHS, MAO, French Club, DECA, Yearbook

    I also had a job thrown in the mix, but I would guess my leadership did play a part.
  • NxtNxt Registered User Posts: 361 Member
    A note on internal transfer. Worst case scenario, if he's admitted to second choice and wants to do internal transfer, make sure you know if he'll stay focused his first year to get that GPA for int. transfer..doens't need a 4.0 but something decent like 3.5 (you can look up the stats, change every yr) For a freshman, it sometimes isn't that easy to keep up that GPA with all the parties & greek life, distractions etc. Just a heads up

    As far as admissions for McCombs goes, they look for the whole package. Anything can weigh it down and some things can compensate for others. From my school, UT chose the top 2 or 3 percent for Business and SAT was a big deal. Now if those were slightly off, leadership roles in school and community, as well as a stellar letter of Rec. could make up for that.
  • m1817m1817 Registered User Posts: 375 Member
    "I expect 1200's but 1100's or 1300's are a possibility. 1400's I expect are out of reach without a major study effort...and some luck."

    It would be worth his while to take a Kaplan, Princeton, or Testmasters SAT prep class. They raise SAT scores by ~200 points.
  • rkay123rkay123 Registered User Posts: 97 Junior Member
    S got into McCombs (not automatic admit, the decision was given mid-Feb) with these credentials. I hope it helps"

    ACT 31 GPA 3.91 Unweighted Rank 24/485 (Top 5%) 14 APs including senior year.

    Good Essays.

    There are a total of 1000 spots in McCombs. 750 are available for auto admits. They auto admit based on rank until 75% of total spots are given away. Remaining 250 are up for grabs via holistic review
  • AAli4RealAAli4Real Registered User Posts: 374 Member
    If he doesn't get accepted directly and has to do an internal transfer its all about playing the "game". Allow me to explain:

    Students who want to go to McCombs but have to do an internal transfer talk to a lot of students and basically it comes down to taking classes with easier professors and or taking easy classes to ensure having a high GPA. It seems to me that McCombs just wants you to have the pre-reqs completed and have a high GPA NO MATTER WHAT.

    Calculus I & II, Micro, and Macro and maybe MIS are the main pre-reqs. Calculus is a killer at UT if you haven't taken it at the AP level in high school, therefore, the students I knew that got in took Calc at a community college and transfered the credit. These same students took some required classes as well as electives to pad their GPA and by the end of the year they had a GPA of 3.75+ and were accepted.

    I know of people (me as well) that were rejected even with a 3.5-ish 3.6-ish GPA although I think I may have been rejected because I dropped a calculus class.

    Just based on my observations...
  • spectrum2spectrum2 Registered User Posts: 1,295 Senior Member
    Thank you all for the replies, it has been a busy few days, I'm sorry for not getting back sooner.
    Pricillablair: I'm just curious about SAT scores. From what I understand UT just looks at the verbal and math scores. Am I right about that. I'm just curious how you 2 subject total shakes out. S is taking his test on Saturday.

    m1817: You make an excellent point. Depending on how it goes we may explore this for over the summer. Right now his primary focus needs to be on getting his rank as high as possible so I don't want to throw intensive SAT prep into the mix. I hope these classes can really deliver on that promise. 200 points is alot but would make all the difference!

    AAli: Thank you for making the point about how difficult it is to transfer and sharing your findings about how to get the best GPA bang for the buck. I'm thinking its a lot of pressure on a freshman. I expect S will go to TAMU if he doesn't get admitted to the UT program. He may pick TAMU even if he does get into UT. I'm sorry you got rejected. Would you mind saying what you picked as your alternate major and how you feel about that?
  • PriscillablairPriscillablair Registered User Posts: 7 New Member
    Yes, it's true that admissions for McCombs typically look at verbal and math, not to say that writing doesn't play any role at all. I'd advocate you having him take both the SAT and the ACT, as some people do astoundingly better on one test than another (I did much better on the ACT).
    My SAT breakdown was: 650 verbal, 670 math, 660 writing; 1320 without writing
    My ACT breakdown was: 33 english, 29 math, 34 reading, 30 science, 9 out of 12 on writing; 32 composite
    No, I didn't perform astonishingly well on either test, nor did I take any sort of prep class at all (I didn't even do any home studying either. Oops). If you're really that concerned about his tests, have him take one test raw without prep, see how scores are, and then decide whether it's best or not to have him take any sort of additional study measures.
  • katytxkatytx Registered User Posts: 67 Junior Member
    Most important consideration is who recruits at Mays vs. McCombs. I think you will find you have a better chance of getting a well paying job, if that is important to you, at UT
  • sdremelysdremely Registered User Posts: 66 Junior Member
    I was recently accepted into McCombs and I was very surprised that I was. I wasn't even in the top 10% of my class (although it is a very small class) and have made a number of B's in high school so my GPA wasn't all too stellar. I believe they look more at the overall picture. I did make a 2040 on my SAT and a 29 on my ACT. I took very challenging courses throughout high school. I never took a "regulars" class when an upper level (AP or Honors) was offered and I doubled up on sciences my junior year. I was VP of student council and a member of many other clubs/organizations. I was the captain of the volleyball team, played basketball my senior year and have played club volleyball for many years. I have quite a few community service hours and included babysitting in my job experience.

    I think if you're not automatically admitted into McCombs (it's 75% auto admit, 25% holistic review) it's really about being a well rounded person. I have a classmate who had an amazing SAT score-in the 2300 range-but was not admitted into McCombs. He wasn't as involved in ECs and didn't take as hard of classes as I did (although he did make great grades) and that's my guess as to why he was not admitted.

    It's just about being all around the best student you can be. Don't get caught up on the little things. Just encourage your son to be active in high school his last few years and if he truly tries his hardest, his labor will be rewarded.
  • sdremelysdremely Registered User Posts: 66 Junior Member
    As for improving SAT scores, I suggest the Princeton SAT Review Book-it's much cheaper than a class (which I heard can be rip offs, regardless who you take the class from) and provides a good review over the things he should already know. It's easy to read through because it speaks in a very conversational tone. I was very pleased with the book as a whole.
  • pharmacistmompharmacistmom Registered User Posts: 26 New Member
    Apparently leadership positions far outweigh academic stats if you don't get admitted to one of the 750 automatic admission spots. My d was instate, top 3.25%, SAT2310, National Merit Finalist, Varsity cheerleader, very competitive Dallas high school, took all AP classes etc. and wasn't accepted to McCombs. UT offered her admission to the School of Undergraduate Studies - undeclared major. Hmmmm.
  • AAli4RealAAli4Real Registered User Posts: 374 Member
    @ spectrum2:

    I was enrolled as an Economics major while at UT but decided that business was the best value degree I could get so I transfered to Univ. of Houston.

    For you and your son to think about: IMO, it does not matter what school your son/daughter/whoever goes to for business as long as it is an accredited program and is near or has connections with employers.

    TAMU is in College Station, however, it has a brand name as does UT Austin so going to A&M won't hinder your son's chances of working in Houston or wherever he wishes to work.

    Just look into schools that are good for his major. If he wants to do accounting than try as much as you can to get into UT as they have the #1 program for that. If its Supply Chain then I would recommend the Univ. of Houston, which is not on the level of UT and A&M, but has a revamped Supply Chain program and has contacts with employers in the oil & gas industry in nearby downtown Houston.

    Just something to think about...

    P.S. If you have specific or general questions you can PM me and I will do my best to offer my input or I can give you the contacts for people who can better help you and or your son.

    Good Luck :)
  • spectrum2spectrum2 Registered User Posts: 1,295 Senior Member
    Pricillablair: Thank you for clarifying about your stats. S is taking the SAT this week and the ACT next month so we should have a good idea about which is the better choice. Both he and I would be thrilled with your stats!
    sdremely and pharmacistmom: Both of your posts support that when we get past automatic decision there really is no way of predicting who will get accepted into a competitive program. There are so many qualified applicants there just isn't any way of knowing for sure what will tip the scales. Pharmacistmom, no doubt your daughter did find a school or a program that she was happy with. Those are some amazing stats.

    AAli: Thank you so much for your offer to help. We may get back to you as we get further along in the process. Presently S doesn't know enough to know what specific business major he will choose. It seems that a generally strong program is the way to go. You make a good point about location. It is largely for that reason that I have been really happy that he wants to stay in TX! I'm glad to see that you were able to find a solution that works well for you. I know that UT has a very well respected program but we know there are other strong options out there and you make that point again.
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