Who Gets In? Who Doesn't? Who Cares?





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Discus: Ivy League Schools: Harvard University: 2004 Archive: Who Gets In? Who Doesn't? Who Cares?
By Nervous (Nervous) on Monday, March 15, 2004 - 07:31 pm: Edit

After spending more than three hours reading the posts on Harvard, I've discovered:

1) If you're rejected/deferred from Harvard: You're in good company.

2) SAT scores aren't everything.

3) The College Board makes way too much money off of anxious students.

4) Perhaps the New Yorker put it best: "The admissions process is like gambling on Mars. The rules can change at any moment."

and finally

5) We all have way, way too much time on our hands.

Who gets in? Who doesn't? Ten years down the road, what matters? Would you think differently of your surgeon if he's from Harvard or Cornell? Would you change brokers if you knew he had been rejected from Yale?

It's just a thought. As April approaches, I hope everyone keeps this in mind. If you're posting on this site, you're probably smart, ambitious, and headed for an awesome future. Good luck!

P.S. Sam Walton, founder of Wal-Mart, graduated from the University of Missouri. Paul Allen dropped out of Washington State University. Warren Buffett went to University of Nebraska. Lawrence Ellison dropped out of University of Illinois. Michael Dell dropped out of the University of Texas at Austin. What do these five men have in common? You guessed it. They're all billionaires.

P.P.S. By the way, this is, by no means, an encouragement for everyone to drop out of college!

By Medlevell (Medlevell) on Monday, March 15, 2004 - 07:34 pm: Edit

Mmmm...I guess you have a point.

By Thenamek (Thenamek) on Monday, March 15, 2004 - 07:44 pm: Edit

Without a doubt, you win the Best Post of the Century Award. (If there isn't one, there dam- well should be!)

By Shahab (Shahab) on Monday, March 15, 2004 - 08:21 pm: Edit

Warren Buffett went to University of Nebraska. Lawrence Ellison dropped out of University of Illinois.

er... warren buffet did get rejected from harvard... but he went to Upenn, and THEN to U Nebraska

Larry Ellison went to UChicago.

But yeah i get your point.
You could point out Andy Grove, Jack Welch and a host of others also. My rule has always been that the people make the Ivies- Ivies dont make the people.

By Ambitiousyokel (Ambitiousyokel) on Monday, March 15, 2004 - 08:23 pm: Edit

Didn't Bill Gates drop out of Harvard, though?

By Alv (Alv) on Monday, March 15, 2004 - 11:02 pm: Edit

I agree with point 5. We really do have to much time on our hands.

By Abercrombie1509 (Abercrombie1509) on Monday, March 15, 2004 - 11:35 pm: Edit

Yes, Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard and became the richest man on the face of the earth. Ted Kaczynski, who matriculated at 16, graduated from Harvard. Ahh, the irony...

By Haithman (Haithman) on Tuesday, March 16, 2004 - 12:31 am: Edit

Yes, you make valid points...but noone here cares. You have to understand that most of us here on the board are so caught up in names and prestige that we think that is the only way we are going to be successful. I know it's bad, but that's just how must of us overachievers think
I mean honestly..who spends hours on forums about colleges..?

By Polka (Polka) on Tuesday, March 16, 2004 - 02:32 am: Edit

bored people who are just looking for friends :'(

haa haa just kidding i have lots of friends in real life and many reallu important things to do, in fact i need to go do them now.... uhh.... bye

By Nervous (Nervous) on Tuesday, March 16, 2004 - 04:50 pm: Edit

I know when I wrote this post that some people are going to be offended. But please note that I'm not making fun of anyone who's spending time at these forums--for heaven's sake, I just admitted to using up three good hours!

I wanted to say this: Admissions decisions are done based on your grades, your activities, the weather, the number of Massachusetts kids, the ratio of male/female applicants in your area, what your admissions officer ate for breakfast, and what high school your father graduated from. It's a haphazard process. Please don't take rejection or acceptance into Harvard as a death knell.

You have a right to be nervous about the college. After all, it's only the next four years of your life! But I've learned from observing three years of rejections and acceptances (and now being rejected and accepted myself) that overachievers like us sometimes lose sight of where we're going.

In case anybody needs an example, think about how many more months of high school we have. Three. That's it. And then you leave your mommy and daddy and best friend and brother and sister and Fido forever. You've sent in the application, you've tried your best--now the rest is up to the officers. Why not try to (gasp!) ENJOY the rest of high school?

Cheers!

By Voigtrob (Voigtrob) on Tuesday, March 16, 2004 - 04:53 pm: Edit

Every so often a post like this comes along, and it never fails to annoy me.

By Thenamek (Thenamek) on Tuesday, March 16, 2004 - 08:23 pm: Edit

Please elaborate, Voigtrob.

By Haithman (Haithman) on Tuesday, March 16, 2004 - 11:14 pm: Edit

I didnt say its bad to spend hours on this board, I do, I live on these boards!
I was simply saying that most of us on this board are overachieving teenagers who really only care about the Ivy league and those higher end schools. Therfore getting in is a big deal to us. So what I was saying is that those of us on these boards value our education enough to spend hours talking about it, and it is people like us who are usually caught up in prestige. So dont think that I meant anything bad, I didnt.

By Lilqtdncn (Lilqtdncn) on Tuesday, March 16, 2004 - 11:17 pm: Edit

OMG I had know idea the unibomber went to harvard. That's a little scary...lol. Nervous, actually you made me feel a little better. Does anyone know from like older college students if they think college is not very different from school? My sister keeps telling me it's not that different, but I still have this image of college being SOOO different, people are so much more mature, but still know when to play and when to work. If it's really NOT that different, that might be a bad thing for me.

By Baggins (Baggins) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 06:52 pm: Edit

This site is starting to annoy me. Every time I get on the internet I come to this site. I think I'll only stay on this site for 10-15 min. and I end up being on it for an hour. Right now I should be finishing my homework.

I don't know about all of you but I want to go to a good school so I don't have to worry about wether I'm getting a good education. The school I'm going to right now dumbs people down. I used to like school and now I can barely keep my grades up to A's.

By Itziar (Itziar) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 07:32 pm: Edit

High schools vary across the board, but an education is what you make of it. You said you wanted to "go to a good school" so you don't have to worry about whether you're getting a good education. As if sitting in Harvard classrooms for four years will make you smarter than doing the same in a state university's? Going to an Ivy is not gonna guarantee you a good education just by your presence. You need to actively pursue education, no matter where you wind up.

Not to preach, but I feel that true education is making use of the resources you have and taking advantage of opportunities that come your way. Prestigious universities might have more to offer than lesser-known ones in terms of resources, but no professor can or will force-feed students the real education.

By Baggins (Baggins) on Sunday, March 21, 2004 - 11:42 pm: Edit

I'm not saying that all I need to do is go and sit in Harvard classrooms and I will be smart. I am the type of person that does well in a comptetive environment. What motivates me is how hard I need to work to be on top. A small school can't give me that. There isn't enough competition.

I am constantly looking for opportunities for a better education. I am going to Harvard this summer to take a chemistry class. I also take the hardest courses offered by my school. I still am not getting as good an education as I once got when I went to a larger school with higher standards.

By Chasgoose (Chasgoose) on Monday, March 22, 2004 - 12:24 am: Edit

Size does not make one school academically better than another. In fact, the general view is that the smaller your school is, the better. I go to a small private school with only 240 students in grades 9-12. Yet we are considered the most academic school in our state. 30% of my graduating class are National Merit Semifinalists and we generally get about 20% into Ivy-caliber colleges every year. Another thing is that no matter where people go to college, they always report back about how their college work was easier than high school.

By Baggins (Baggins) on Tuesday, March 23, 2004 - 10:00 pm: Edit

Size does matter if you are going to a public school. You pretty much have to put your futur in the hands of government funding. Right now my school is wondering if it will get any money for next year because of the deficit. If you go to a private school you don't have to worry about whether your school has enough money to run. Small public schools are the hardest hit when the economy goes down. I didn't realize that until I moved here. Before that I would have said the same thing.

By Sticksandstones (Sticksandstones) on Wednesday, March 24, 2004 - 02:34 pm: Edit

i agree wiht Nervous, Harvard is just another college one can go to. My family immigrated to america a few years back and whenever i am talking about colleges with my parents, they look at me and say "you are going to Harvard". They just know the name and the supposed prestige tied to it. I tell them that im just an average B+/A- student but they just tell me to be better.i could goto to any mildly selective, or state univ. and still live a happy life.

By Nirvanarageatm (Nirvanarageatm) on Wednesday, March 24, 2004 - 10:40 pm: Edit

Admissions are totally random. I know someone at my high school last year who got 1320 SAT, 28 ACT, 3.5 gpa, and was accepted at UPENN. He was all-state in track, but he was not recruited to run at Penn. This year, someone with a 1550 SAT, over 4.0 (our school's weighting system doesn't change gpa that substanitally), many extra curriculars, accepted at notre dame and georgetown, but wait listed at Washington University in St. Louis. Unless you are a recruited athlete and/or your family gives a lot of money to and has connections with a particular university, you cannot be a "sure thing" at any of the prestigious universities. Robert Rubin, President Clinton's Secretary of the Treasury was accepted to Harvard but denied from Princeton. After he graduated phi beta kappa and summa cum lauda from Harvard, he wrote Princeton a letter emphasizing his accomplishment. To this Princeton responded, "It is our standard policy to reject talented students so Harvard may have some." So just chill out and see what happens on 1 April, and one more thing: ENJOY SENIORITIS! Also, have fun and don't worry. It's second semester senior year! Good luck next Thursday!

By Lxg21918 (Lxg21918) on Wednesday, March 24, 2004 - 11:15 pm: Edit

amen, nirvana. amen.

By Nirvanarageatm (Nirvanarageatm) on Sunday, March 28, 2004 - 01:08 am: Edit

I do what I can. I'm pumped for 1 April though!

By Mzhang23 (Mzhang23) on Sunday, March 28, 2004 - 01:28 am: Edit

>>Size does not make one school academically better than another. In fact, the general view is that the smaller your school is, the better. I go to a small private school with only 240 students in grades 9-12. Yet we are considered the most academic school in our state. 30% of my graduating class are National Merit Semifinalists and we generally get about 20% into Ivy-caliber colleges every year. Another thing is that no matter where people go to college, they always report back about how their college work was easier than high school.

I'll second that. 51% of last year's class went to an Ivy League school. And that's not counting the "Ivy-caliber" schools that others went to (Duke, MIT, Williams, etc.) Last year's class had about 50 kids, I believe.

By Scarletgirl (Scarletgirl) on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 02:12 pm: Edit

GEEZ! Where do you go to school, Mzhang? Posts like that prove that money matters.

By Willywang (Willywang) on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 03:21 pm: Edit

Yea, don't give yourself an excuse if you got rejected from Harvard. It simply means you are not good enough for Harvard. Do you honestly think that Gates, Buffet, Allen and so on should represent the epitomes of college dropouts, i believe there are more failures outthere that dropped out than just those few geniuses. Money isn't everything tho, just so u know!

By Albertc (Albertc) on Wednesday, March 31, 2004 - 03:27 pm: Edit

Mchang, I suspect you attend one of the elite and prestigious day preps in NYC or the Roxbury Latin School (45 grads per year), in West Roxbury, Mass., where the Dean of Harvard College is on its Board of Trustees. These are the only schools in America with such a small size and still boost a matriculation rate of over 50% into the 8 Ivies. In fact, Roxbury Latin School sends from 6 to 8 to Harvard alone from 45 grads each year. Many of these schools cater to the rich, powerful, and famous elite of NYC and Boston, whose kids already have "hooks" to the Ivies (legacies, money, athletic recruits), in addition to inner-city poor URMs (underrepresented minorities) with even bigger "hooks" to the Ivies because of recruitment. So it is not only money, but in addition to "hooks", that do really matter. It is not all about "academic admits" to the Ivies. Academics alone will not do it for admission to the Ivies. You need "hooks".


You also mentioned that 30% of your class is made up of National Merit Semifinalists. However, the number one school in America with the highest number, as well as the highest percentage of its graduating class with National Merit Semifinalists, is the academically elite public magnet school in Fairfax, Va., Thomas Jefferson H.S. for Technology and Science. TJHS consistently has over 150 NM Semifinalists out 400 graduates each year. They do not send 30% to the Ivies, despite being more academically accomplished. Close to 40% of its class is Asian. This is also true of Stuyvesant H.S., the school with the second highest number of National Merits, with 50% of its class Asian Americans. The public magnet Hunter College H.S. in NYC also has a higher percentage of NM Semifinalists than the elite NYC day preps, but sends a smaller percentage of its grads to the 8 Ivies. These students do not have the aforementioned "hooks".

The small NYC elite and prestigious day prep shool include Collegiate, Trinity, Brearley, Spence, Nigthengale-Bamford, Dalton, Horace Mann, and even St. Ann's in Broolyn, which sent 40% of its 74 grads to the 8 Ivies last year. They also include the Winsor School in Mass..

So, if you go to a day prep school in NYC with 240 in grades 9-12, I would guess you attend the Collegiate School. Am I correct, Mchang?


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