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I recall saying that I would never do this...

tickytock14tickytock14 569 replies48 threads Member
edited December 2007 in What Are My Chances?
... but the admissions process is finally real.

white female from kentucky
fairly competitive public magnet
UW: 3.65ish. we do not weight or rank, but my counselor will probably put that I'm top 25% or top 30%.


= reason for low gpa/rank, but basically I was really sick my junior year and went from november to april doing virtually no homework. plus my school has a severe grading policy and most higher ranked students have taken easy/easier courses.

this year when i went to get my cross country physical (<3 running, hope to walk on in college) they found that I had a huge tumor in my stomach, so i missed like 5 weeks. it was totally unrelated to the previous illness. some of my semester grades are going to be lower than they should due to teachers who aren't superunderstanding and won't let me make up participation points, etc.

ACT: 35

SAT: 790 CR/720 M/760 writing, 8 essay
took again while out of town on college visits. bad plan.
760 CR/660 M (ew.)/760 W, 9 essay

SAT II: took in may of junior year, when i was just starting to feel better
800 lit, 760 US, 610 chem haha

I'm taking physics, math II, and spanish in january, though not all of my schools will consider those scores. Unless something goes severely wrong, I should do well on all of them.

human geo - 5

world hist - 5
stats - 4

11th (sick year!!)
chem - 3
comp ab - 2
us - 5
eng lang - 5

physics b
art history
spanish lang
english lit
calc bc

FBLA (10-12):
- historian last year, VP this year
- on a national committee
- placed twice at nationals (6th in parliamentary procedures, 8th in entrepreneurship), three times at state, four times at regionals

Soccer (9-11):
- JV for three years (stupid political stuff. I played for the wrong club. I'm still mad about that)
- club soccer since I was 8, quit junior year due to illness/burnout

Lacrosse(9-10, 12):
- varsity for three years, did not play junior year

policy debate (9-12):
- lots of local tournament wins/speaker awards
- like one random JV speaker award at a big national tournament
- outstanding novice debater (omgzz)

NHS (11-12):
- about 100ish service hours? all from different places, so not really exciting

Academic WorldQuest (12)

Attended Chinese School for a year

ref soccer games for dinero

The junior year illness also affected my extracurricular activities pretty severely. How would you recommend explaining this without whining?

schools include but are not limited to:
- princeton
- williams
- dartmouth
- yale
- stanford
- claremont mckenna
- bowdoin
- colgate
- university of kentucky

looking to major in econ, international relations, physics, or some combination thereof.

teacher recs should be okay but not amazing.
edited December 2007
12 replies
Post edited by tickytock14 on
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Replies to: I recall saying that I would never do this...

  • tickytock14tickytock14 569 replies48 threads Member
    I forgot. I'm also a NMSF and was the business manager of our yearbook last year (it's an award winning publication and I was in charge of about 3000 orders + advertising + wrote a few stories).

    I'm looking at penn too, either CAS or wharton.
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  • poipoi 2425 replies2 threads Senior Member
    I think you will get into some of these. I would also have your guidance counselor talk about the illnesses when he/she completes the required forms for each school. Two other schools you may want to look at are George Washington and Wake Forest. Glad your feeling better. Best of luck!
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  • tickytock14tickytock14 569 replies48 threads Member
    thanks! yeah, my counselor will definitely mention it.
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  • LucaskhanLucaskhan 607 replies23 threads Member
    All Reaches: Yale, Princeton, Dartmouth, Penn, Williams, Stanford

    If you apply to all of them you have a good chance of getting admission to one or two of them.

    claremont/bowdoin/colgate: I have no idea

    U Kentucky: High Reach (Around 1-2% chance of getting in :P)

    Yeah...a lot of **** happens to you huh?
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  • kindaslick89kindaslick89 477 replies21 threads Member
    Explain why you are cursed with sickness in your essay and hope for a sympathy factor. I can tell you Princeton is near impossible to get into, Yale, Penn, and Darmouth are reaches. Stanford is probably a low reach. But then again if I had SAT scores like you I wouldn't have to worry about the whole admissions process.
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  • tickytock14tickytock14 569 replies48 threads Member
    cool everybody, thanks for the help.

    I have no hope at all for princeton because six other people from my school are applying-- three legacies, one athletic recruit, and two with amazing accomplishments. But still, I can dream.

    We had 11 students get into Penn last year; seven into Wharton. So I guess they like our school?

    Nobody knows what Williams or CMC is.

    I'm planning to explain the sickness in the any additional info. section instead of in an essay. do you think they'll actually read that?
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  • bazookabubbblebazookabubbble 177 replies16 threads Junior Member
    yes they will definately read it. and id say you got a good chance at penn if 11 came from your school last year. you should also look at Carnegie Mellon, its got a good econ program. good luck!
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  • tickytock14tickytock14 569 replies48 threads Member
    some additional info about my school (aka I'm bumping this because I'm lame):

    counselors: "go to the university of louisville, it's a top 25 school. if not, you'll be fine at UK. it's top 50."

    last year had several people into harvard, yale, princeton, penn, and duke. one into pomona.

    two girls got into stanford but went to princeton instead.. would the fact that they were rude and didn't even tell stanford that they were turning down the offer give stanford a grudge against my school?
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  • tickytock14tickytock14 569 replies48 threads Member
    I'm being double lame and rebumping.
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  • tickytock14tickytock14 569 replies48 threads Member
    I'm being triple-super-lame and rebumping with a final school list:

    claremont mckenna
    penn (college)

    annnd maybe michigan
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  • Student615Student615 1865 replies20 threads Senior Member
    Nobody can chance you for most of these schools. It's safe to say, without even looking at your stats (though to be clear, I did read through everything), that almost all will be reach-y, or at the very least high-matchy.

    You're an exceptionally strong applicant who obviously has a lot to offer any school, but it's (a) impossible to chance people at most of these places; (b) particularly difficult to chance someone in your situation. We simply can't know, any more than you can, how admissions officers will feel about your illness-related weaknesses. One hopes that they'll all be understanding, but if you're counting on "okay" teacher recs to pump up your personal qualities, that could hurt you. If I were an adcom, I'd probably be hoping for a rec that said "The kid got dealt a bad hand, but came back SO strong and SO motivated..." etc. versus, y'know, "He wasn't in class much because of illness, but when he was here, he did fine." Then again, maybe the recs will be stronger than you hope, or maybe it'll be a non-issue...it's just not something that's predictable.

    I do hope that that's not actually your final list, because it's devoid of a single safety. If you don't want to go to Kentucky, then that's fine...don't apply there. But there are still a lot of great "safety" schools that would be glad to have you, and would likely even offer you merit money. Right now, odds are very good that you'll get into multiple schools on your list, but it's also conceivable, in a very-worst-case-but-nonetheless-possible scenario, that you wouldn't get into any. Why even risk it?

    Last piece of advice: be careful with your attitude. You're right to wonder how you can make note of your circumstances without sounding whiney...make sure that you accomplish this in any remaining apps!!! Right now (and I know that this is only an internet forum, so I hope you take this in the casual, suggestive spirit in which it's intended), between your comments about being ill, being stuck on JV soccer, having no chance at Princeton, etc., you come off as rather bitter. You obviously have had some bad luck, and it's very important to make note of this on your apps. I'm not trying to say "suck it up," but I do recommend that you adopt more of a "crap happens," as opposed to a "crap happens to me" approach.

    If you're still looking for better safeties/matches, people might be able to make suggestions if you say something about what you're looking for in schools. Right now, it's difficult to glean much from your list, which kind of just looks like a semi-random collection of "good schools" (no question there).

    Just to reiterate, you really are a strong candidate and I'm sure that this process will go well for you. Good luck :)
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  • J11TJ11T 63 replies7 threads- Junior Member
    STUDENT615 Well said! That is one of the most measured insightful responses I've read on a chances thread.

    I too have gone though some difficult times, but since my teachers touch on that. I don't mention it at all. I figured since my stats are good, my not mentioning some of those difficulties (Only because my recs enumerate extensively about them) gives a bigger impact.

    More like she went through all of that, but she still triumphed and didn't make it into a hinderance. When someone else can attest to your perserverance, I believe it is better received.
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