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Middlebury, William & Mary, Georgetown, NYU, Furman, UNC, Wake Forest

amelia1212amelia1212 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
Hello everyone! I am only a sophomore, but hopefully one of you can assess my situation and offer advice. Thanks in advance :). Please note- I moved states between freshman and sophomore years! This took a toll on my weighted GPA/number of APs/number of honors because I have to take some required courses that most kids took freshman year and my new school doesn't offer honors classes, unfortunately.

SAT I (breakdown): Haven't taken, got 1820 on PSAT with no prep but I am enrolling in prep classes and working out of Princeton Review books, expecting around 2100, 2200 (realistic?). On my PSAT I scored mid-600s in CR and 700 in W, but M screwed me up
ACT (breakdown): Taking in June; I have no idea what to expect
SAT II (place score in parentheses): None yet, might take lit, WH, and a language
Unweighted GPA (out of 4.0): I don't have access to my transcript/freshman grades, but...
Freshman year UW/W: 4.0/4.19
Sophomore year UW/W: 4.0/4.33 (so far, but I trust I will maintain this GPA)
Rank (percentile if rank is unavailable): Don't know, most likely top 5% or 10%
AP (place score in parentheses): Haven't taken tests yet
IB (place score in parentheses): N/A
Senior Year Course Load: N/A
Major Awards (USAMO, Intel etc.): No major awards yet but I received a scholar-athlete award for swim last year, my school only has one Honor Society and only accepts 11th and 12th graders

Extracurriculars (place leadership in parentheses): FCA (FR and SO years), Varsity swim team (FR and SO; hopefully will be a captain?),Young Life (FR), Interact Club(SO, Vice President), Beta Club (SO), Family, Career, and Community Leaders of America Club (SO), Debate Team (SO), Linguistics Club (SO, Founder), will be joining Academic Decathlon (would have joined this year but I moved too late in the summer)
Job/Work Experience: Working at a seasonal festival last year, had an Etsy shop last year, currently looking for a job
Volunteer/Community Service: So far I have done around 30-40 hours but will complete many more; I am organizing a mission trip (June 2016); most hours have been done through a local animal shelter, my church, and Interact Club
Summer Activities: My only summer during high school so far has been spent moving/adjusting, but this summer I will be continuing learning languages and taking classes online; I plan to participate in the Middlebury summer language program this summer or summer 2016.
Essays: Will talk about moving from VA-MS and how big of a change it was/how I became a stronger learner by pushing myself in a school system that was not as advanced as that of VA or my OCD. I am a fairly good writer but my essays are sometimes unorganized
Teacher Recommendations: N/A
Counselor Rec: N/A
Interview: N/A

Applied for Financial Aid?: Maybe
Projected Concentration: Deciding between international business/marketing, psychology, any language
State (if domestic applicant): VA one year, MS three
Country (if international applicant): N/A
School Type: Public, large (class of ~400)
Ethnicity: Caucasian
Gender: Female
Income Bracket: N/A; middle class.
Hooks (URM, first generation college, etc.): N/A :/

I am very passionate about languages. As of now I am learning 1 every 3 months. I just started this and so far I am proficient in spanish (level III in school), English is my first language, and I am self-studying German (I'd say I'm proficient). Next on the list is Swedish, then Mandarin, then Arabic, etc. I plan to learn around 12 by the time I'll be submitting my apps.

My classes :

Spanish I: B+

Alg I: A (honors not offered)
Eng I HN: A+
Biology HN: A
Health/PE: A+
Spanish II: A+
World History HN: A+
Leadership training: A+

Eng II Acc (My school doesn't offer honors, but it offers accelerated for English ONLY): A+
Spanish III: A+
(REQ) Mississippi Studies (1 sem)/Photography I(1 sem): A+
AP World: A+
Human Anatomy and Physiology: A+
Geometry: A+
Swim team (counts as a class for some reason)/PSAT prep: A+

Over the summer I will be taking Chemistry and Alg II online (honors if offered)

JR year I plan to take:
Pre-calc and Trig
AP Stats
AP Chem
AP Psych
Spanish IV
Swim team/Photography II

I plan to take classes at MIT online for college credit in between JR and SR years

SR year I plan to take:
AP Calc A.B.
AP Physics
AP US Gov & Pol/Comparative Gov
AP Macro/Microeconomics
AP Spanish self-study or a class @‌ a local college
Swim team/AP Human geography (maybe)
Not sure what else yet... I'll probably take a few classes @ a local college

I can't think of anything else at the moment. I'll appreciate any guidance you can give me! Seriously, I'll take anything, esp. exciting ECs that reflect my interests (for reference, I have been swimming for a while but my times aren't good enough to be a recruited athlete, I have a passion for animals, I am a vegetarian, I'm really into languages and traveling, etc.)
Please leave suggestions for other colleges! Thanks a million.

Replies to: Middlebury, William & Mary, Georgetown, NYU, Furman, UNC, Wake Forest

  • shawnspencershawnspencer Registered User Posts: 3,110 Senior Member
    Hey amelia! Congratulations on such excellent grades and thinking about colleges so early. I won't do a "chance" because it's still early in the game and I don't really believe that I would be qualified to do one anyway. I am, however, a student at one of the schools you listed, the College of William and Mary, so feel free to ask me any questions you may have or if you just wanna talk.

    Anyhow, if you're interested in languages (an awesome thing to be interested in btw) I recommend you look into the opportunities to practice those languages or integrate it into your lifestyle at the colleges you look at. At William and Mary, they have cultural or language houses where the students speak the languages while inside, a cool concept, and has study abroad opportunities in many different countries. I recommend you see if other colleges you are looking at have similar options as the best way to learn a language is through continual practice or living among people in the country itself.

    Do you currently live in Mississippi and/or plan to live there by the time your college apps are submitted? If so, you may also want to look at your instate options as you might be considered an out of state student by the time your apps roll around. Consider your passions into your extracurricular. For instance, before I applied, I was an English as a Second Language tutor to people from foreign countries, which was cool because I got to use many of the skills I learned in high school. You could also use subject tests to demonstrate your proficiency, but remember it's about quality over quantity. I have had friends who are exceptionally talented at learning languages, but it is important to delve deeply enough that you are confident in your ability to converse in someone else's native tongue before moving on to the next one.

    Good luck with everything, and let me know if you have any questions.
  • amelia1212amelia1212 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
    Thanks, that was very helpful! Unfortunately, I'm stuck in Mississippi until I graduate, and am not interested in any colleges here. Is it true that W&M students experience major grade deflation? And being an english tutor for foreign students is such a great extracurricular! Did you get involved with an organization or do it privately? Thanks again. @shawnspencer
  • shawnspencershawnspencer Registered User Posts: 3,110 Senior Member
    I did it through an organization titled Neighbor's Link. It was more to help new immigrants and their families, so it was actually very humbling to see that you were actually making a difference in their lives in some way. I only have one semester of experience, so I can't speak for everyone, but I have not found it particularly difficult so far. This may change when I have the opportunity to take some more upper level courses, but I'll keep you updated!

    Personally, I think the whole grade deflation thing has been exaggerated, like many things on the internet. I wasn't the hardest worker in high school, yet I haven't found the workload to be drastically different. You have much more free time than in high school and I have found the work in college to be more interesting and worthwhile. Granted, very few students graduate each year with 4.0's so you will have to work for those grades, but the average GPA here is similar to that of UVA and other similarly ranked schools. This semester the breakdown of my grades were as follows (A, A, A-, B+, B) and I am perfectly confident that I could have raised those B's into A's had I not procrastinated on those final essays and had gone to my professors' office hours more.

    Speaking of which, I think one of the best things about William and Mary are some of the professors here. Granted, not every professor will be spectacular or life-changing, but I have had a positive experience with them so far. My econ professor had study sessions in Aroma's, the local coffee shop, before every midterm and my international relations (who was ranked as one of Princeton Review's best 300) really lives up to his name. On a side note, William and Mary has 8 professors on that list, bested only by Mount Holyoke, so I look forward to taking classes with more of them in the future.
  • amelia1212amelia1212 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
    Wow! Thanks so much! Yes, I agree that you have more free time in high school but the work is boring, and I can't wait to go to college and study things that interest me! It's exciting that William and Mary has so many amazing professors! Do you know if it will be exceptionally hard to get in if I'm out of state?
  • shawnspencershawnspencer Registered User Posts: 3,110 Senior Member
    edited January 2015
    I meant to imply that you have more free time in college. Most people don't have more than 3-4 classes per day and it's all about how you spend time outside of the classroom. It's pretty sweet for the most part

    State law mandates makes it so that about 35 percent of students are out of state, which means the rest are from instate. I can't seem to find the numbers anywhere, but it's likely similar in selectivity to some of the other schools you have on your list. It's somewhat more selective, but I don't think drastically so, probably 4-5 percentage points lower I'm guessing. Anecdotally, I am from out of state and I was the only one accepted out of the five that applied, so I thought I was really fortunate (two were accepted the year before)

    One thing I do have to mention though is that it is more expensive for students from out of state and I would be remiss in getting you excited about a school without making sure it is affordable for your family.
  • amelia1212amelia1212 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
    Oops, I misread. Only 5 out of state students applied? I would have estimated a higher number. Thanks again.
  • shawnspencershawnspencer Registered User Posts: 3,110 Senior Member
    Haha from my school last year that is, which is admittedly slightly farther away. Where I come from the most popular schools are instate or in the surrounding area. I'm pretty grateful for my history teacher who first introduced me to the college. He's a huge history buff and loves colonial history that he knew everything about the school. If you ever taken US history, you might be interested to know that Henry Clay, John Marshall, and Thomas Jefferson all attended the same school, the later of which founded the nation's first honors system there. Naturally, when I asked him to write a recommendation for me, he enthusiastically agreed.
  • amelia1212amelia1212 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
    Well, I just thought more students from a given school would apply to William and Mary since it's such an amazing college. I'll be taking US history next year. That's interesting! I always loved learning about colonial times, but I haven't learned US history since 7th grade.
  • shawnspencershawnspencer Registered User Posts: 3,110 Senior Member
    edited January 2015
    Well if you end up coming here, you'll never get enough of colonial williamsburg, it's right next door. It's the town's second biggest attraction, aside from busch gardens. Ahhh I understand, it's probably just a regional thing. Most people outside of CC know only about schools close to them. Like in my hometown, the two most popular schools outside of our state schools are Northeastern and Fordham, but when I talk about them to people who've lived their life in Virginia, they've never heard of them either. Go figure.
  • amelia1212amelia1212 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
    Exactly! Not many people know what I'm talking about when I say I want to go to William and Mary. Most people in my school plan on going to Ole Miss or Mississippi State. I really don't want to go to a school where football is huge, haha. Surprisingly, I've met several students who are aiming for Georgetown. I guess since it's in DC, almost all applicants are out-of-state.
  • shawnspencershawnspencer Registered User Posts: 3,110 Senior Member
    edited January 2015
    My yearbook teacher once told me that once you enter college, even if you never planned on going to any sports games, you might find yourself cheering alongside the fans in a "rah rah" fashion. To some extent, I guess it has proven to be true. I never went to a football game in high school nor have I ever watched a game on tv in its entirety, but in college I've been to quite a few events. My face during the homecoming game actually made it to the school's homepage for a few months. Maybe its part of the freshman mentality of trying everything at least once or perhaps it's because all the games here are free to students, but I wouldn't necessarily rule it out hehe.

    I don't know that much about Georgetown except that it has a really good international relations program and apparently they have a good cupcake shop next door. Out of curiosity, what did you say you wanted to study again? Nobody's been accepted to Georgetown from our school in a while, so it kind of has this cursed reputation over here haha
  • OGPStudentOGPStudent Registered User Posts: 30 Junior Member
    I would not be worrying too much about college right now, except ensuring that you receive the best grades you can possibly manage. Don't get lazy!
    As a fellow language learner like you, I would highly suggest either partaking in a STARTALK program or applying for the NSLI-Y scholarship. The former is a free course in a critical language at a local college, and the latter is a summer or year program fully funded by the State department to send you to a foreign country and study the language. I just applied for Chinese. Definitely look into it, as it would both help your application and support your interests!
  • amelia1212amelia1212 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
    Shawnspencer- Georgetown Cupcakes! I used to go there whenever I went to DC. I have no clue what I want to study, but I'm looking into psychology or international business (I know, very different). I'll try keep an open mind about sports games, haha.

    OGPStudent- Thank you, I'll look those up! I was planning on doing an immersion program in Germany this summer, but it doesn't look like that will work out :(
  • shawnspencershawnspencer Registered User Posts: 3,110 Senior Member
    Those are things I am interested in too! Actually, I am torn between international relations, environmental science, and business with a concentration in marketing. My freshman seminar was actually a psychology based class about familes, psych, and law which I thought was really cool. We got to visit a courtroom and see a juvenile court case play out. I'm still quite undecided on what I want to do yet, but I've been taking a couple of classes dabbling in each, but you're definitely not the only one with diverse interests
  • amelia1212amelia1212 Registered User Posts: 39 Junior Member
    The psychology class sounds so interesting. I just don't want to focus on one thing in college and then realize that I really don't like it during my junior or senior year. That would be terrible! What exactly does international relations entail?
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