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Chance a sad sophomore for top 20 schools (specifically Upenn-Huntsman and Umich)

20hsha20hsha Registered User Posts: 15 New Member
edited January 11 in What Are My Chances?
Hi there!
I'm a sophomore who just realized junior year is actually next year. I know I'm still a sophomore but It's second semester and I'm starting to get the college emails so I figured it was time to start thinking about this stuff. Casually panicking because I definitely have not done enough at all yet- I was hoping for some advice on what to strengthen/how to proceed from here on out.

- I don't have any specific colleges in mind yet, but I love Umich and Upenn, their hunstman program especially. I'm very into language learning, and I'd like to be an international lawyer so the dual degree for undergrad works out very well.

annnd here are my stats!

GPA: 4.3 (weighted)
ACT: planning on studying my butt off and getting a 34 or 35. I took the pre act and it said I could do it if I put in some effort.
SAT: I know you have to take a math II for huntsman but I'm only a sophomore and I can barely do algebra II. Willl also do chinese and spanish subject tests, and biology as well.
Not planning on taking the actually SAT though, I'm a fan of the ACT and their weird science section.

AP Classes: Ap bio this year (teacher says I could probably get a four, maybe five), GOING TO TAKE: AP english, Ap gov, Apush, Ap calc, Ap physics, Ap spanish, (will probably take some other aps but those are the definite ones so far)

UNIQUE CLASS-WISE STUFF: I take Chinese and Spanish!
- freshman year took college level introductory to coding class. The only girl there rip

Big awards/achievements: I won a national essay contest that was pretty big, won a Ohio EPA award @ state science fair, a1st place trophy at another science fair esque event (state level), a department award for history @ my school, currently a semifinalist for NSLIY (hoping I will get in and just nope out of school for a year to actually do something I love). I became a legitimate black belt @ ten years old ?? I skipped 6th grade lol


Field hockey- A brief, brief stint as a varsity field hockey goalie freshman year, but my main position is defense. Played Jv this year, varsity next year. I'm not recruitment good at all.

Speech and debate club- Started the club (9th grade), am president. No teachers wanted to coach/volunteer bc they would get no stipend, Principal recommended a toxic disbarred adult volunteer to be our coach who bullied some club members (who are freaking children)/didn't show up most of the time so that kind of hurt club efforts- we still do go to competitions but hoping we will do better now that we have an actual coach.

Quizbowl (this year) - We got a high ranking team (4th in small school nationwide!) Going to nationals this year but for jv?

State wide writing program (8th grade)- It's a very specific writing competition that happens within our state, I coach middle school kids to bring back hardware + help develop their skills as writers. Several of the kids I have coached have made it to states/winning awards @ states.

Lake Erie (8th grade) - Me and one of my friends do research on trying to make lake erie healthy and not covered in algae. It's been going on since the 8th grade and we've gotten a few lab offers- we're looking to start researching at our local university this summer. We've also done a bit of activist work- 500 petitions sent to local senator bc the Trump administration wanted to cut funding to conserving the lake

Chinese club (10th grade)- Founded with another friend bc our school's Chinese program sucks (we have four kids in our class...), partly because it doesn't get the same opportunities as other languages (introductory class in middle school, honors and ap credit). So basically we raise awareness (Ie let students know the Chinese program exists) and are currently fighting to get higher level Chinese classes honors credit, and to create an AP class for it. The entirety of the Chinese program (30 kids? Pretty big considering no one joins clubs @ my school)

Hackathon club (10th grade)- I've been learning to code in my free time and have been enjoying it, so me and my Chinese club friend decided to go to hackathons for fun! We've got this awesome STEM teacher whose trying to get more girls into the coding field, and she's having her husband set us up with some possible internships / other stuff.

Freelance writer (9th grade)- I get paid 40 bucks an article by this one company I have a contract with, but also do random articles for cracked, collegehumor, etc. Hoping to make 1,000 this year through this (and then use it to pay textbook fees ahahaha). I also have a blog where I discuss legal grey areas - it's a fascination of mine, and I'm hoping to get it monetized soon.

Lockpicking (10th grade)- I originally started because I decided that since I'm a teenager and all I should rebel in some way
that won't end up with me totally self-destructing. But I really enjoy it, and I'm getting quite good at it! I want to join a guild or smth at some point.

Coding(9th)- Learning CC+ and currently making this app for sex ed purposes ever since one of my friends looked at me in shock when I said there were other methods of birth control than the pill. Ahh, Ohio. Gotta love the abstinence-only program.
I'm also making an app which allows me to read manga/see reviews/rankings all at once because all the other apps for it on the app store suck, but this is more personal then anything.

Research papers (10th)-
Chaos- I'm writing a research paper on the chaos theory and the stock market. I have no idea why, but I kind of love new age science. And multivariable calculus that I don't know how to do. A physics teacher says he'll help me fix it up and get it published, but we shall see.
Prohibition- This one's for school, but I'm hoping to get it published in the Concord review/get the not so literary version far in nhd

between 9th and 10th: Nada
between 10th and 11th: applying for a summer research program at a lab specializing in Lake Erie. Will most likely get in with merit scholarship because we impressed the board director+ teacher at our highschool is buddies with everyone there. Also hoping to intern for the EPA, just to see what actually goes on there.
This might change depending on whether I get into nsliy.

income: upper middle-class level
Diversity??: asian/middle eastern rip.. I'm a bisexual in a largely homophobic area? I'm probably not going to put that anywhere though because It doesn't really affect me because I'm only partially out. I'm also a muslim, but obviously not a very good one.

- My (public) school is top ten in the state.

Ok so how should I improve?? Are there any programs/big competitions you would recommend? Would I have a chance at umich or upenn-huntsman? Any advice at all??

Thank you!

Replies to: Chance a sad sophomore for top 20 schools (specifically Upenn-Huntsman and Umich)

  • billcshobillcsho Registered User Posts: 18,405 Senior Member
    What is your uwGPA.
  • lenniethebunnylenniethebunny Registered User Posts: 6 New Member
    Current classes you’re taking?

    I really feel you and the thing when you’re the only girl in a cs class lol!

    Hi from Northwest Ohio!!
  • onceortwiceonceortwice Registered User Posts: 41 Junior Member
    BTW, you can't submit a school paper to Concord Review OR NHD, so consider other choices :)
  • MahindraMahindra Registered User Posts: 416 Member
    @onceortwice eIs this actual experimental research or just more like a online research paper?
  • ab2002ab2002 Registered User Posts: 619 Member
    What's your schools GPA weight for APs? If yours is the kind of standard 4.8 in Ohio, then there is no way you have a 4.3 W GPA with one AP, unless you've taken like all honors base classes. I take 2 APs and 2 honors (all that's offerred) and I'm only able to get a 4.4 W. Anyways, besides the point. I would NOT recommend taking AP Calc next year if you "can barely do Algebra II." I am assuming you're taking Precalc over the summer? Also, the PACT gives you a 3 point range for scores, it does not tell you what you are going to get if you put the work in. That's like me saying I took the PSAT and got a 1300 but it told me with hard work I can get a 1500, like no. If you're at the #10 school, I assume you go to Olentangy High? If so, we're not far from each other at all. What you seriously need is a spike. Your ECs are all over the place. There's no consistency. It goes from field hockey to linguistics to environmental studies to computer science to debate and then to business. See what I mean? If you're applying for Huntsman, you need to make yourself look involved in business outside of the classroom. Do an internship with Huntington or something, start an MIT Launch club, etc. Just anything to show interest, skill and initiative.
  • collegemom3717collegemom3717 Registered User Posts: 5,651 Senior Member
    Looks as if it's time to focus a bit- both your writing and activities are all over the place. Huntsman has something like a 7% acceptance rate, so take a look at what you *really* like about that program and look for other programs that have those features.
  • Penn95Penn95 Registered User Posts: 2,320 Senior Member
    edited January 13
    @20hsha there is no point in chancing you now without concrete SAT scores and unweighted GPA. For Penn you need tippy top stats to have a decent chance. Specifically Huntsman is even more difficult to get in (think Harvard, Stanford level of difficulty) so you really need to be exceptional to have a good chance.
  • coolguy40coolguy40 Registered User Posts: 1,816 Senior Member
    edited January 20
    You have good stats, and you're well on your way. Keep up the grades and you'll be fine. College is about finding the right fit for you rather than prestige or brand name. It's as much a financial decision you make with your parents too. Going out of state costs 2-3 times as much as going in state. Private schools cost a whole lot more. If you want to study computers, you won't need a big school anyway because you can find a good job out of college. My suggestion would be to go for a scholarship. Until then...go to Prom and have some fun!
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