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I HAVE A SUPER-UNIQUE EC's - Chance me for Northwestern/Emory/USC

20212021 2 replies1 threads New Member
edited 8:42AM in What Are My Chances?
Hi, I am a rising senior. My dilemma is that my GPA isn't the best, my ACT scores are rather high, and my EC's are unique in the sense that I haven't seen anyone do them. I intend to either apply for Bio(premed) or for Finance with an intention of doing Pre-Law

Overview: African-American male whose parents are refugees from Somalia. My family income is approximately ~$110,000; I live in an upper middle-class neighborhood and go to public school. I moved to America after the 7th grade from the UAE.

GPA: 3.35/4.0, ~4.05/5.0 (Its an U trend in the sense that I had a 3.6 GPA at the beginning of my sophomore year, then in the end of sophomore year and beginning of Junior year I wasn't so hot.
ACT: Composite (32), Math (35), Reading (30), English (33), Science (29). I took it only once in February, and I am planning on retaking it in July with the hope of getting >33 and a superscore of >34.
SAT: Composite (1410), Math (730), Reading (680) [I am not planning on retaking this unless I must, and I probably won't send it]

AP/Honors Classes
Freshman: AP Human Geography, Honors ELA 9, Honors Geometry, Honors Biology
Sophomore: AP European History, Honors Precalc/Trig, AP Physics, Honors Chem
Junior Year: APUSH, AP Calc AB, AP Chem, AP Bio, AP Lang
Senior Year (Next Year): APES, AP Gov, AP Macroeconomics, AP Micro, Honors Debate, AP Calc BC, AP Stats

AP scores:
AP Hug: 3
AP Euro: 3
I took Lang, Bio, and APUSH this year, and I am currently awaiting results.

EC's (I will rank them from most important to least important):
1. I started a Brokerage Firm during the Covid-19 pandemic, utilizing funds from family members and myself. I initially started off with about $3,000, but right now our total assets are approximately $30,000 (Some people took their money out). I focus on trading options that relate to biomedicine and also transportation, but I sometimes venture far if I feel like there is a good opportunity. My most successful trade would probably be buying about 200 contracts of a $25 Avis Call when it was trading at ~$10.70ish.
2. I have done Policy Debate all throughout high school, attend camps during each summer. I feel like next season my partner and I can be a top-3 team in our state, and hopefully be the first team from our school to qual to the TOC.
3. I am currently in a research internship with a local proffesor to discover new viruses using strands of DNA from public resources like the NIH. Hopefully by the end of the summer, I can be published.
4. I am the president of my schools muslim student organization, where we organized the first school iftar during the month of Ramadan.
5. I am on the local mosques youth leadership committee.

I intend on applying to USC, Emory, Northwestern as my reach schools, all for finance. I also am looking at George Washington, KU, LSU (10 year PHD/MD), Tulane, Baylor, and Creighton

edited 8:42AM
10 replies
Post edited by CCEdit_Suraj at
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Replies to: I HAVE A SUPER-UNIQUE EC's - Chance me for Northwestern/Emory/USC

  • collegemom3717collegemom3717 7904 replies84 threads Senior Member
    my EC's are unique in the sense that I haven't seen anyone do them

    I am going to say this really, really kindly: your ECs are great, but they are not unique,

    And, it's not just about getting accepted: there is the financial side.

    With your family income, you are going to be looking for substantial financial aid, and many of the schools you list are not need-blind- that is, they will consider how much financial aid you need when deciding whether to offer you a place. That is especially true for the 'meets-need' schools.

    Have you assessed each of the schools on your list for financial viability? For example, GWU does *not* promise to meet need. Your ACT is plenty strong enough, but your GPA will hurt you- you might get an offer, but whether they want you enough to offer you enough financial aid for you to actually be able to attend the school is another.

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  • jym626jym626 57706 replies3025 threads Senior Member
    GPA is the first thing schools will look at. Given the crazy world situation they may be flexible, but its unlikely that it will cease to be a top component.
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  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 5377 replies91 threads Senior Member
    Are you a US citizen, or do you have your green card? If not, what visa do you have?
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  • joecollege44joecollege44 413 replies19 threads Member
    I am also concerned about your AP scores- they don't show you can easily master college level material yet.

    I think those reaches you mentioned are really unlikely. Tulane I would still call a reach but maybe more of a realistic one.
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  • 20212021 2 replies1 threads New Member
    @Mwfan1921 I am a US citizen, and I was born here and lived here for 2 years before moving
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  • Mwfan1921Mwfan1921 5377 replies91 threads Senior Member
    edited June 2
    Being URM (and first gen?) will help you in the admission process. I would still categorize your reaches as reaches, and include Tulane in that group.

    What state do you live in?

    Make sure to demonstrate interest at the schools that consider that in the admissions process...GWU and Tulane do, you will have to check the rest.

    Do you know what your annual budget for college is? If not, discuss that with your parents and come to an understanding. Then run the net price calculators on the websites of the schools on your list to get an estimate of your costs. You must have at least one affordable safety....if KU is affordable that could be your highly likely/safety.
    edited June 2
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  • 20212021 2 replies1 threads New Member
    @Mwfan1921 I am from Kansas, but I am not a first gen. What about the target schools like Creighton and Baylor. Those seem in reach. I ran it through a net price, and I go for free to baylor, along with the fact that I am applying to their debate scholarship (full tuition).
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  • momofsenior1momofsenior1 10211 replies119 threads Senior Member
    I think Baylor would be a high match for you and Creighton a safety.

    Your reach schools are going to be very reachy with your GPA. As noted, GPA is still what schools look for first.

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  • coolguy40coolguy40 2911 replies8 threads Senior Member
    Brokerage firm? You need to be licensed with a 4 year degree to give investment advice. I wouldn't put that on your list of accomplishments, because it sounds like a teenager doing illegal activities at first glance. Doing speculative trading for yourself is fine, but it's really more luck than accomplishment. Doing that for other people...it's illegal. I would say, stop the "Brokerage firm" and don't put that on your application.
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  • Waiting2exhaleWaiting2exhale 3087 replies18 threads Senior Member
    @2021 : I find your mixed test results interesting, placing you on a see-saw in terms of how strong you look at showing yourself to be an all-around, high-performing student.

    I think, though, your ECs and activities show you both to be enterprising and community-minded, and will count in your favor for the attributes and perspectives you may be able to contribute to any school community.

    Can you lock in on your current GPA? Is there any significant reason you were "not so hot" during the end of sophomore through junior year?

    As a parent looking in from the outside at my children's classmates, none of them URM, I can tell you I have seen similar stats get kids into Emory (but they are a changing) and (not on your list) Vanderbilt.

    Heeding what others here have said, knowing what the possibilities for having your family's full demonstrated need met will be critical for you in deciding where to submit applications (and where to put your hope).

    Do you know how to look for your GPA range among accepted students from your HS in Naviance (if your school uses it).

    Look at the Common Data Set , section C11, to better understand how your GPA looks in comparison to the pool of a university's enrolled student body . Not every school will include GPA information, so be aware of that.(Google Common Data Set + University name.)

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