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What is my chance at any ivy league or Amherst university?

NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
My profile:

Sat score-1560(800 math, 760 writing)
Sat subjects:-
Math 2-800
Physics-800
Chemistry-800

Awards:-
*State level elocution participation
* District level debate and elocution 1st place
*Swach Bharat essay 1st place(conducted by the rotary club)
*Honor roll
*Student of the year

Extracurricular activities:-
*President of the student council-10 the grade
*External affairs incharge-9 and 11 grade
*Debate and elocution club president
*Interact club(a ngo associated with rotary foundation) president
*Tech team vice President
*Math team vice president
*Member of soccer club(both girls and boys)

Part time jobs:-
*Receptionist in my father's clinic during summer
*Volunteer to teach soccer to autism spectrum disordered children and adults at Sai kripa autism home.

Community service:-
Did a lot of it through the interact club . Here are the important few:-
*Collected a lot of funds and items to help the victims of the Kerala , a state in India, floods.
*Dengu awareness campaign
*Collecting funds and volunteering in orphanages
*Volunteered as a listener in 7cups.com , a website which provides support to people who need somebody to hear them.

With some killer letter of recommendation (hope so!)


Yep that's it. I am an international student. Here are the school I will apply.

*Harvard (I know toooo much)
*Princeton, Amherst (need blind to international students)
*Uc Berkeley
*UPenn
If u think I won't get into any please recommend me the schools I can get into and get some nice scholarship too.(would be better if it is 100% , lame I know)

Thank you guys in advance for answering and reading this long discussion!



27 replies
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Replies to: What is my chance at any ivy league or Amherst university?

  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    And yeah I spoke at many conferences like model un
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  • International DadInternational Dad 326 replies8 threads Member
    edited February 9
    Hi, @Nopejam You have great stats congratulations.

    California’s public universities doesn’t give aid or just few aid to out of state or international students.

    I think Harvard, Princeton, Penn and Amherst College, all of them give financial aid for need, not scholarships, this aid depends of your family income.


    What mayor you want to study?

    How much is your family income per year?

    How much can your family paid per year at College?
    edited February 9
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  • LindagafLindagaf 9929 replies538 threads Senior Member
    Amherst is a tiny liberal arts college with fewer than 2000 students. If you don’t understand that, you have no chance.

    All of those colleges use holistic admissions. You need to show them that you understand what they are looking for and how you can offer that.

    You need to do a lot more research to understand what these and other very selective colleges look for. Other international students who are looking for financial aid apply to these schools too, so it’s probably even more competitive. Berkeley is a firm no, as there is no international FA.

    You can google lists of colleges that meet full need for international students.

    We also don’t know what your grades are. So far, I’d say the odds are not in your favor.
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  • sgopal2sgopal2 3610 replies50 threads Senior Member
    Sounds like financial aid is important for you. Apart from a handful of US colleges who are need blind, the vast majority are need-aware for internationals. This will make things very difficult. The colleges who are need blind for internationals are very difficult to get into.

    US admissions is holistic, which means they pick and choose candidates based upon ill-defined criteria, which change from year to year. So it is impossible for any of us to predict. But your test scores look fine. They will also heavily focus on your marks. So hopefully you're at the top of your high school. Just for perspective, Harvard only takes a handful of kids from the subcontinent every year, and some of those are athletes. So if you are among the best 5-10 kids in your entire country, then you stand a chance.

    Otherwise, start seriously looking at other colleges which are known to give merit aid to internationals. Read this article for more details:

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/quanzhiguo/2018/07/19/only-five-u-s-colleges-are-truly-need-blind-for-international-students-here-they-are/#7cecd6c34a9a
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  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    Well my parents can pay up to 10,000 dollars and I plan on working part time. I am still in my junior year. So can u please recommend how to improve my stats. Is it good enough or not?

    I would also would like to know my chances at Princeton particularly.

    And abt other colleges in us who can meet my demand
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  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    10000 per year
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  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    And my family income can qualify me for need based aids
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  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 3362 replies63 threads Senior Member
    edited February 10


    What are your grades/gpa? Course rigor?



    It isn’t possible for posters to give you a probability of acceptance. Even if we knew your gpa/rigor....we would still have no visibility to other important pieces of your application...essays, LORs, and how you compare to other applicants from your school and country.

    Generally, at the schools you are talking about, the international acceptance rate is lower than 5%.



    edited February 10
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  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    I got 95% in my 10 the boards that would qualify for a 4.0 gpa in the us standards
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  • blossomblossom 10177 replies9 threads Senior Member
    You have terrific stats and I'm sure you're a wonderful person.

    What are your options academically if you stay home? And do you realize that working part time barely puts a dent in the expenses you'll have if you come to the States?
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  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    blossom wrote: »
    You have terrific stats and I'm sure you're a wonderful person.

    What are your options academically if you stay home? And do you realize that working part time barely puts a dent in the expenses you'll have if you come to the States?



    Thank you for replying.

    My parents are willing to pay me up to 20000 dollars per annum. I don't understand what you mean by my options academically if I stay at home. Can u please explain what u meant by that ?

    And do recommend me what to do next and the colleges that are suitable for me to apply
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  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    Hi, @Nopejam You have great stats congratulations.

    California’s public universities doesn’t give aid or just few aid to out of state or international students.

    I think Harvard, Princeton, Penn and Amherst College, all of them give financial aid for need, not scholarships, this aid depends of your family income.


    What mayor you want to study?

    How much is your family income per year?

    How much can your family paid per year at College?



    Well the major is undecided. Most probably computer science and psychology

    My family income is not that high and I am sure to qualify for a need based aid.

    My family can from 10000 to 20000 Dollars
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  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 3362 replies63 threads Senior Member
    Do you have affordable college options in your own country?

    You should consider all of the US colleges as reaches, so you need to have a back up plan(s)....such as attending college in your own country, or the EU (where college admission is generally more stats based, and less holistic and cheaper).
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  • blossomblossom 10177 replies9 threads Senior Member
    Do you have local colleges you are interested in?

    And do you understand that just because you qualify for need based aid in the US does NOT mean that you will get enough to attend? Most colleges in the US do not meet need- mainly because they don't have enough money to go around.

    Do some homework on how financial aid works in the US for International Students before you put a list together and before you fall in love with any US option. There are colleges in the US which will offer zero aid to an International.....
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  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    blossom wrote: »
    Do you have local colleges you are interested in?

    And do you understand that just because you qualify for need based aid in the US does NOT mean that you will get enough to attend? Most colleges in the US do not meet need- mainly because they don't have enough money to go around.

    Do some homework on how financial aid works in the US for International Students before you put a list together and before you fall in love with any US option. There are colleges in the US which will offer zero aid to an International.....

    Yes I do understand that and I do have a back up plan to study in my own country.

    Do u think it's a good idea for me to apply to Princeton or Harvard (or any above college I mentioned) with these stats or is it just a waste of registration fee
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  • sgopal2sgopal2 3610 replies50 threads Senior Member
    The chances for any international is low, even those with perfect stats/marks. You are no exception. The chances of getting into Harvard or Princeton is far lower than the overall admit rate (5%). I would estimate that your chances are less than 1%. But this is just a guess. I haven't seen your letters of recommendation, essays, and other critical aspects of your application.

    Sure, if you have the money to spare, then go ahead and throw in an application. Chances will be increased if you apply to a binding early decision program. The SCEA/EA options don't help increase chances so much. Both Harvard and Princeton have EA. There are other colleges in the Ivy league that have binding ED: Columbia, Dartmouth, Cornell, Brown. Amherst attracts a lot of international students looking for aid because of their FA policy.

    You may do better by applying to some of the lower ranked schools that I linked in the Forbes article above.
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  • theloniusmonktheloniusmonk 2636 replies5 threads Senior Member
    Well the Harvard lawsuit data does show an advantage in applying SCEA, even after you take out athletes, legacies etc that typically apply SCEA. So if either of Harvard or Princeton, or Yale is your first choice, you can apply SCEA, but if you're not full pay, it's going to be tough to get admit as international at those places. Even if they say they're need blind, they're tyically not. And since you'll need financial aid, you don't want to apply ED anywhere, so that would rule out the other 5 ivies. Berkeley is you best bet wrt admissions but if you can't pay the full costs, not sure it makes sense to apply.

    If you can't afford a US college, you best best is to get your undergrad in India and get a masters here.
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  • DadTwoGirlsDadTwoGirls 6007 replies1 threads Senior Member
    How strong are you at soccer? Are you strong enough to be recruited for soccer? You seem to have said that you played on both girls and boys soccer teams. To me this sounds as if you might be a girl who is so good at soccer that they also let you play on the boy's team.

    Your stats are excellent. You should apply to universities in the US that meet full need for international students. You do not need to apply to schools that are need-blind for admissions. Your stats are good enough that you have a chance for admission anywhere. However, the top schools (such as Princeton and Harvard) are a high reach for any student.
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  • NopejamNopejam 18 replies5 threads Junior Member
    pandoraaa wrote: »
    I’m an applicant from India in the CBSE curriculum as well, but I’m a year older than you so I’ve finished my applications and am now waiting for results (as well as trying to study for my boards 💀). My stats are similar to yours, 1550 SAT, 800 sat math level 2, 760 French and 780 literature, 9.7 GPA across high school and 97.2 percent 10th board (btw your 10th score doesn’t matter more than 9th and 11th and 12th half yearly, even tho these are not at all important in India. So you need great grades throughout your transcript.) Your extracurriculars look great as well, remarkably similar to my own except I’m grossly untalented at athletics. And don’t try to improve your SAT score since I saw you mentioned that somewhere. After you cross 1500/1550 nobody cares and it won’t increase your chances if the score is a few points more.

    I know how you feel, since in the Indian curriculum stats are given great importance and when you get a 1500+ SAT score you immediately think Ivy League, and that’s the only thing Indian relatives understand and give importance to lol

    But having gone through months and months of research and firsthand experience and talking to career counsellors, I have a much better view of the whole picture. It may seem extremely unfair, but your financial need will put you at a great disadvantage. That’s just how it is, since most schools are need blind for only US citizens. So my Indian friends who were born in the US and have citizenship there have an exponentially higher chance of acceptance at many unis even tho we have the same education same stats and same paying capacity. The schools you’ve mentioned, while need blind, are suuuuuper selective and have a >1% acceptance rate for internationals. But you should for sure take your chances there, because they’re so selective that it almost becomes a lottery and you never know 😂

    However, don’t bother applying to UC Berkeley. Or any other UC or public universities for that matter, since they give zero aid to out of state/internationals. So UCs will only give aid to California residents mostly. That would truly be a waste of application fee bec 20,000 dollars is very low compared to the tuition fee at UC.

    I would also recommend you look at other lower ranked but still great schools with higher international acceptance rates and financial aid. It’s a long process but I know a lot now and I could list a few if you want but I’m not entirely sure what you’re looking for. A school doesn’t have to be need blind, and still give good aid so do your research. In The Ivy League itself, you might have better chances at Cornell but financial aid is a problem unless you luck out with the Tata Scholarship for Indians. I’m also aware that it might be a situation where you’ll either go to places like Harvard Princeton or stay at home and go to an IIT or something. If that’s the case then well, apply to Harvard and Princeton but just know to not expect a lot.

    Also, know that when you google the acceptance rate for an uni, it’s for all applicants and the international acceptance rate is muchhhh lower. Schools give preference to their own citizens first, even when it’s not a question of financial aid. You should look at the published CDS data for each uni and see the number of internationals to get an accurate picture. And find out which unis alumni from your school have gotten into with good aid. Also, consider applying Early Decision to a place where you have reasonable chances bec it really boosts your odds of getting in.

    Whoa, that was long but I just really empathise with you so 😂😂 good luck!

    That's a lot of useful information. Thank you. Yes my situation is similar as u mentioned iit or ivy. I have no interest to study in iit since I want to do a major and a minor degree (cs and psychology respectively).

    Yes, please do recommend me some colleges. Can I know what u applied to?
    Best of luck with your application and acceptance.

    Thank you so much for replying.
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