International student asking for help.





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Discus: College Search and Selection: August 2004 Archive: International student asking for help.
By Ria (Ria) on Monday, August 09, 2004 - 12:37 pm: Edit

So, I'am an international student looking for the "fit" among the many great colleges in the US. It's really hard to find that "fit" without visiting so I'd really appriciate any help I can get. Thank you.

I'm looking for a LAC with strong academics, a nice campus and friendly people. Location doesn't matter. Small classes is a big plus.

I'm not sure what I'm going to major in but possible majors are biology, math, philosophy and psychology. I'd also like to be able to take advanced classes in russian.

I have a high GPA, ok EC's (leadership and research) but when I took the SAT's I got a pretty low score (1210). I'm usually good at math so I didn't study as much as I should have. I am going to re-take in october.

The colleges I've been looking at are: (they are all reaches)

Yale (yeah, right...)
Amherst
Middlebury
Smith
Grinnell
Kenyon

I'm not so sure about:

Bowdoin
Carleton
Macalester
Oberlin
Swarthmore

Again, it's really hard without visiting.

My first question is, is it even worth applying? There are so many amazing international students here and we're all competing for the same spots. I do need as much finincial help as I can get and with my SAT score it feels pretty hopeless.

Second question, are the colleges I'm looking at "the right ones"? Is there some other colleges I should be looking at?

Again, thank you for any comments.

By Arcadia (Arcadia) on Monday, August 09, 2004 - 12:53 pm: Edit

what country are you from? Have you taken any SAT IIs? Any idea where you rank in your class? Do you have any hooks (something that you do extraordinarily well that might set you apart from other applicants)?

By Geodude666 (Geodude666) on Monday, August 09, 2004 - 01:03 pm: Edit

barring any extraordinary achievement, all the colleges you named are reaches

By Vulcano (Vulcano) on Monday, August 09, 2004 - 02:23 pm: Edit

Tulane University offers great financial aid to internationals and might accept you because you are an international, in fact, they probabky would accept you if you have a good GPA and some EC's.

By Carolyn (Carolyn) on Monday, August 09, 2004 - 09:24 pm: Edit

I agree with Geodude that all of the schools currently on your list are going to be reaches for you with your current SATs...get them up into the 1300's and you'd have a good shot at most of the schools on your list.

Since you seem to be leaning towards LACs, some good matches for you with your current test scores (and possible safeties if you can get up above 1300) - might include: Dickinson, Gettysburg, St. Olaf (in same town as Carleton but somewhat larger school), Wittenberg, Lewis & Clark, Denison, the College of Wooster, Muhlenberg, Pitzer, Goucher, Wheaton (in Mass.), Lawrence University, Beloit, Knox College, Earlham. Of this list, pay particular attention to Dickinson - it has an excellent language department (actually graduates the most language majors of any school in the US), including Russian. St. Olaf and Knox also have Russian - the others may as well, espeically Beloit. However, the best schools on this list for financial aid for internationals include Lawrence, Beloit, and the College of Wooster.

By Ria (Ria) on Tuesday, August 10, 2004 - 11:09 am: Edit

Thanks for the comments!

Carolyn, thank you so much for the list! :)

I don't know how much it matters but I'm from Sweden. GPA is around 19.5 (out of 20) and we don't rank. I haven't taken the SAT II's yet but I'm planing to do so in november. I'll also take the TOEFL.


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