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Do I have any chance at Yale?

hope469hope469 Registered User Posts: 229 Junior Member
Yale has always been my dream university, but I started off high school with a very bad freshman year so my GPA weighted is a 4/4.5 (expecting it to rise to 4.1-4.2/4.5, because I'm having a very, very good year right now). (FYI, Naviance says the average accepted from my school is a 4.15). 1560 SAT, 800 Math II, no hooks, pretty good ECs (I'm captain of an academic competition team which placed top-10 in the nation last year, but I'm not sure if that'll count for much...). I'll for sure have very good teacher recs too. Will they not bother with my application because of the GPA? What else can I do to improve my chances?

Please don't be afraid to be blunt and lay in, I appreciate the honesty. Thank you all in advance!

Replies to: Do I have any chance at Yale?

  • gibbygibby Registered User Posts: 10,492 Senior Member
    You seem like a wonderful applicant, as are most students who will ultimately be rejected. As Yale receives more qualified applications than they have seats in their freshman class, Admissions uses a student's teacher recommendations, guidance counselor's Secondary School Report (SSR), essays and interview report to choose one high performing student over another. They look for wonderful scholars of "good character" -- that's an old fashioned word meaning the way you develop your inner qualities, intellectual passion, maturity, social conscience, concern for community, tolerance, inclusiveness and love of learning. And none of those qualities can be gleaned from a post like yours.

    The best that can be said is that your GPA and test scores are within Yale's range, so you will be a competitive applicant. Do you have a chance? Sure! How much of a chance is anyone's guess.

    Best of luck to you!
  • newyorkianewyorkia Registered User Posts: 4 New Member
    @gibby hey, i have the same question...
    I was concerned if my low GPA would be an issue. haven't taken SAT/SATII yet but i got 1460 on PSAT (NM semifinalist). My school has historically sent 2-3 kids per year from a grade of 130. I have a 3.7/3.8 unweighted (yikes, i know). I attended yale young global scholars last summer (junior now). My ECs are: president of debate, vp of model un, have won awards at both on the national level. Also have been involved in my local debate league judging MS tournaments, volunteering, etc, and I'm on their student leadership board. Student council member, written for an online newspaper and school newspaper, 3 internships (2 city government, 1 jewish feminist organization, doing a 4th this summer), been on national leadership board of a jewish youth organization, as well as the teen leadership board at my synagogue.
    Is the GPA a deal breaker? grading is notoriously difficult at my school (almost no one gets 4.0 and I'm in the top 5%). Hook is that I'm a gay woman in debate and I've done a lot of advocacy around that. Also I've been told i'm a very good writer and i have a good essay topic. do i have a shot at yale, it's my dream school?
  • gibbygibby Registered User Posts: 10,492 Senior Member
    edited February 2017
    ^^ @newyorkia: Yale does consider a student's ranking in their application process. Even if your high school does not provide ranking, nothing precludes Yale from putting all the applications from your high school in GPA order and comparing the course rigor. So, does your unweighted 3.7 GPA place you in the top 10% of your graduating class? Does it place you in the top 1% to 5%? That kid of stuff is going to matter when you apply to college.
  • hope469hope469 Registered User Posts: 229 Junior Member
    @gibby Would top 10% be too much of a stretch?
  • gibbygibby Registered User Posts: 10,492 Senior Member
    edited February 2017
    See C9 Data on Yale's Common Data Set: https://oir.yale.edu/sites/default/files/cds2015_2016_0.pdf
    Percent in top tenth of High School Graduating Class = 97%

    Only 3% of Yale admits are NOT in the top tenth of their high school class, which is why I was asking where your 3.7 GPA places you in your high school's class.
  • Houston1021Houston1021 Forum Champion Rice Posts: 684 Forum Champion
    If a school does not rank its students but is a highly nationally ranked prep school in a large city, how does Yale evaluate such students? Does Yale make decisions based on past admits from the same school? Cum Laude is the only indication of rank and that is the top 20%.
  • gibbygibby Registered User Posts: 10,492 Senior Member
    edited February 2017
    ^^ I'm assuming your high school DOES supply a GPA for each student to colleges, so nothing precludes Yale from putting all the applications from your high school in GPA order and comparing the course rigor. That gives Admissions a relative-ranking of all the students from your high school who apply to Yale in any given year. Admissions also looks at your high school profile, which is a rubric for decoding the grading system at your high school. See:https://professionals.collegeboard.org/guidance/counseling/profile/sample
  • Houston1021Houston1021 Forum Champion Rice Posts: 684 Forum Champion
    edited February 2017
    Thanks @gibby. The school does supply a GPA to the colleges and sends each school such a profile. On the profile it indicates what percentage of the class is in various grade level cut offs. Your posts have really helped my D and me through the selective college admissions process.
  • bubblepop12444bubblepop12444 Registered User Posts: 238 Junior Member
    Just apply and see what happens!
This discussion has been closed.