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C/o 2024 -- Chance Me for mixed list of schools

sciencegirl2024sciencegirl2024 36 replies8 threads Junior Member
edited May 2019 in What Are My Chances?
Hi CC,
I understand that these threads aren't official and mostly just give opinions, but I'd love to hear yours! Any feedback is appreciated.

SAT I (breakdown): 1560 (took one time) 770 RW/ 790 M, 6/5/6 essay
ACT (breakdown): N/A
SAT II: 800 Math II, 800 Chemistry
Unweighted GPA (out of 4.0): 4.00
Weighted GPA: 5.41/6.00
Rank (percentile if rank is unavailable): Top 2%, class size about 275
AP (place score in parenthesis): US Gov (5), Calc AB (5), Stats (5), CS A (5), World History (4), awaiting scores for English Lang, Calc BC, Chemistry, & Physics 1
IB (place score in parenthesis): N/A
Senior Year Course Load: AP Bio, AP Physics C: Mech, AP English Lit, AP Econ Macro/Micro, Engineering, Latin IV, MVC (summer), Linear Alg, DiffEq
Major Awards (USAMO, Intel etc.): Likely NMSF, Latin National Exam Gold Medal & Perfect Paper, State Qualifier for Chem Olympiad


Extracurriculars (place leadership in parenthesis): I have a recent post detailing my ECs
Job/Work Experience: N/A
Volunteer/Community service: Volunteer at local adapted sports league, other minor activities, total 400+ hours
Summer Activities: Summer before senior year I will be continuing my lab research and writing a paper to hopefully get published in the fall, taking MVC at a local university

Recommendations (rating 1-10, details):
(Note: haven't officially asked these teachers yet, this is just my plan)
Teacher Rec #1: AP Chem teacher, we are very close and they are known for writing good recs
Teacher Rec #2: AP English Lang teacher, I am an active participant in their class and we are pretty close
Counselor Rec: good relationship with counselor, more than just a number to them & have talked with them many times about college-related things
Additional Rec: Professor who oversees my lab research, I have worked with them for almost a year now


Applied for Financial Aid: Yes
Intended Major: Chemical or Biomed Engineering, but this is not set in stone
State (if domestic applicant): would rather not disclose, but east coast
Country (if international applicant):
School Type: public, magnet, suburbs
Ethnicity: white
Gender: female
Income Bracket: $80-120K
Hooks (URM, first generation college, etc.): 1st gen immigrant, but I don't think this really counts

Some of the colleges I plan on applying to are: Princeton, UPenn, Stanford, Yale, Brown, UMD College Park, Penn State, Lehigh, URochester, UToronto, & Carnegie Mellon. I'm open to suggestions for other schools (preferably east coast, mid-large size, open curriculum or flexible requirements, secular)

Thank you in advance!
edited May 2019
12 replies
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Replies to: C/o 2024 -- Chance Me for mixed list of schools

  • racereerracereer 411 replies1 threads Member
    You have a good mix of reaches, matches, and safeties. I am going to assume one of the state schools listed is your in state safety. Take a look at Ga Tech as they have one of the top engineering programs in country (all programs in the USNWR top 5) and meets your other requirements. The question would be how much aid/scholarship you could get. I would think GT would be a low reach/match for you.
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  • sgopal2sgopal2 3915 replies52 threads Senior Member
    First generation does count, definitely mention this in your essays. Schools like UToronto don't offer aid for internationals, so you should cross that off your list (unless you have Canadian citizenship).

    I think you have a good chance for the remaining schools. Since financial aid will be an issue, run the EFC on each of the schools listed above, and then save the screenshots. You might find that a few will be unaffordable, in which case you also cross these schools off your list. Then from the remaining schools with EFC in range, then pick one to apply ED/EA.

    I know that you are interested in engineering. You might want to look into UChicago as an ED2 option. They don't have chemical or biomedical engineering, but are opening up a new graduate school for molecular engineering. UChicago has good financial aid.
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  • happy1happy1 24174 replies2426 threads Super Moderator
    Assuming affordability I think you have a very good mix of schools.
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  • Spyder13Spyder13 15 replies0 threads Junior Member
    Your stats match, for your reach schools it will depend on how your essays are and how you present yourself.
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  • sciencegirl2024sciencegirl2024 36 replies8 threads Junior Member
    @sgopal2 Thanks for your response!
    I have Canadian-US dual citizenship which is why I am considering UToronto. The Canadian tuition rates are great :)

    Currently, I am planning to SCEA at Princeton because my parents are apprehensive about EDing at UPenn for financial reasons. I wanted to ED at UPenn because I felt like it would give me the best chance at the M&T program.

    I have looked into UChicago but I wasn't sure about it since the major options are so specialized. I love chemistry, but I would like to keep my options open in case I want to switch to another branch of engineering. Also, do you know anything about how employers/grad schools see the molecular engineering program since it is so new? I imagine it must get a certain level of respect since UChicago is a top school but I can also see them being skeptical.
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  • cptofthehousecptofthehouse 30469 replies59 threads Senior Member
    Have you run NPCs for colleges on your list? Do you have a non custodial parent situation or family business in the picture? How much can and will your parents pay for college?

    I ask these questions because if you get an financial aid package that falls way short at these schools, it can be a problem. Like how are you going to pay for it. Your stats and resume are good enough for you to have a shot at these schools but many of them do not offer merit money. Princeton and Penn, for example, do not.

    You do have schools that are just about certainly going to take you, but are they affordable? PSU doesn’t give a whole lot of aid or scholarships. Yes, you are in the running for great merit money from MD, but it’s not certain and would it. E affordable without it? I have no clue how things work with Toronto. Again, is it affordable.

    If you have the affordable, likely schools covered, go right on ahead. You have the package to give it a go. Without a strong hook, admissions chances are slim for all applicants. There is no way we can assess how your research is regarded in a selective school level. There are students who are so incredible in that regard that they get special research grants st Stanford and like schools, and then kids who barely get a look over for their research projects. Without a specific benchmark, no way to tell. Perhaps the professor who worked with you can let you know how much clout the work will have in terms of admissions to the colleges on your list. USAMAO top 1000-2000, can be a strong hook as well as top 100 ratings in Intel/ISEF. I think you have a better idea what the significance is of your accomplishments there than we can have. Your sponsors and others who know you and have had experience with students from your school would know as well.
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  • awesomepolyglotawesomepolyglot 3882 replies69 threads Senior Member
    Have you considered Rice? It's not on the east coast, but it is secular and flexible with its requirements.
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  • sgopal2sgopal2 3915 replies52 threads Senior Member
    If you're looking for a traditional engineering program, then UChicago is not it. Their new program is in Molecular Engineering, which is a cross-disciplinary field. Its fairly new, I don't know much about it. But I've heard that the UChicago grads from molecular engineering do fine.

    The main issue is that Molecular engineering is not an ABET accredited program. If you want to stay within traditional engineering programs, keep that in mind. But there are plenty of top schools with non-ABET accredited engineering programs: Harvard, Yale, Caltech, Stanford, etc.
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  • TomSrOfBostonTomSrOfBoston 15892 replies1062 threads Senior Member
    Schools like UToronto don't offer aid for internationals, so you should cross that off your list (unless you have Canadian citizenship).

    University of Toronto and many other Canadian universities do offer aid, both need and merit, to international students. Just don't expect a full tuition award.
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  • sgopal2sgopal2 3915 replies52 threads Senior Member
    @TomSrOfBoston I thought the same thing. But I saw this on the UToronto Website:
    I’m an international applicant, can I receive financial assistance from U of T?
    The University of Toronto is a publicly-funded institution and because of that cannot offer financial aid to international students. If you are an international applicant, you should find out about your home country’s financial aid programs to see if you qualify for assistance.
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  • sciencegirl2024sciencegirl2024 36 replies8 threads Junior Member
    Thank you everyone for your responses!!

    @cptofthehouse I've run NPCs for most of the schools above and for the most part, they are affordable. The Ivy/reach schools all give numbers that my family can afford. UMD and Toronto are also affordable based on tuition/expected financial aid alone but I am hoping from some merit. The sticker price at PSU is fairly high, so it will mostly become a serious contender only if I get significant aid/merit.

    @awesomepolyglot I haven't researched TX schools too much yet but I'll give it a look!

    @sgopal2 I'm fine with the program not being ABET-accredited as long as it's still respected. The field does sound interesting, I'll have to do some more research on molecular engineering!

    @TomSrOfBoston From what I've read online, my Canadian citizenship will allow me to qualify for some financial aid and be eligible for their domestic merit scholarships even though I'm from the US. I don't know specifics though, since U of T doesn't have a traditional NPC (they have something that's like an NPC but it assumes you were already accepted and asks some questions I'm not currently able to answer). If you have any more information on the Canadian financial aid system, I'd love to hear it!
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  • peach0v0peach0v0 90 replies1 threads Junior Member

    This a list of very good undergrad engineering schools. You can take a look at each individual college to see if it fits your interests. In addition to those you mentioned, MIT, Caltech, UC Berkeley, U Illinois Urbana-Champaign, U Michigan-Ann Arbor, Cornell, Purdue, UT Austin, Johns Hopkins, Northwestern, Columbia, Duke, Rice, U Washington, USC, etc. all offer excellent programs you can research about. Since you are applying for financial aid, you might want to take how much you would get from each school into consideration.
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