|By Justin871 (Justin871) on Friday, September 03, 2004 - 10:22 pm: Edit|
I visited Yale a couple of weeks ago, spent an evening talking to several current students, and fell absolutely head over heels for the place. Now that I want to go there so badly, I'm terrified I won't get in because the application process is such a crapshoot. I'm not going to post my stats or anything and I want to try to keep this short, but I would like some opinions on the following:
1) I have a 4.0 unweighted GPA and have taken the hardest schedule offered at my school (13 AP classes by the time I graduate). The problem is that my class rank is only 4/275 because new courses for advanced credit were introduced during the 2003-2004 school year that satisfy technology and health requirements. These "advanced" courses were not offered during the 2001-2002 and 2002-2003 school years, the years in which I satisfied those credits. I put "advanced" in quotes because the courses are not in reality any more advanced then what I took, they were just given an advanced title by my school. I have great scores on the AP tests I have taken (5 5's and a 4 in Spanish Language). My question is, should I add an addendum to my application indicating what I have just described? Will Yale (or any college that I apply to) recognize that it is strange that my class rank is a little low if I've taken so many APs? If I add the addendum, will I come off as a bitter student? What if I try to get my guidance counsler to mention the same thing in her report?
2) My school's transcript only reports a course's final grade, not quarter grades. I have never gotten a B for any quarter in high school. Should I indicate this in an addendum as well?
3) Lastly, I plan to run track and xc for Yale if I get accepted. I have talked to the coach who said I'd make the team, but I'm not good enough to be recruited or anything. How can I indicate that, if admitted, I will run for the school (I want a hook so I kinda stand out)? Again, should I add it in an addendum?
I know this is a ridiculously long message. I apologize if anyone feels I have wasted their time, but as I said I'm terrified I won't get in and I want to go so badly (Hey, I'll take pity responses if I can get them). Thanks so much to anyone that offers their thoughts!
|By Rhkid005 (Rhkid005) on Friday, September 03, 2004 - 11:52 pm: Edit|
1) I am kind of confused by point 1, and thus will not comment on it.
2) DO NOT include this, as it won't add anything to your app and could be seen as show-offy. If everyone who hadn't gotten a B in a quarter grade shared this in addendums with admissions, they would be swamped with addendums.
3) You DEF should make this part of your app, whether through an essay (like the activity essay), a rec, or a list of competitions, experience, running times, any sort of leadership, etc.
|By Justin871 (Justin871) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 12:50 am: Edit|
Thanks for your thoughts Rhkid, I really appreciate it. Let me try to clarify question 1. Entering my high school, ninth graders are told they have to take 1 year of technology courses and 1/2 year of a health course to graduate. I fulfilled my technology credit as a freshman taking a standard-level course (worth the least amount of points on the 6-point scale for weighted GPA). I was told that this course was required for all students. However, in my junior year, my school suddenly added a technology course for advanced credit. All of the sudden, a slew of students in my grade were fulfilling their technology requirement with this advanced course. Even though I got an A in the standard course I took, it was only equal to 4 points out of 6 on the weighted GPA scale because it was not an advanced course. The same thing happened with the Health requirement, which I fulfilled in 10th grade for standard credit. This year (12th grade) my school suddenly decided to offer a health course for advanced credit, even though the "advanced" students do the same exact work as the "standard" students. In short, I took what I was told to be the hardest courses offered at my school, and was screwed over by the system. I feel it important that I indicate to colleges that I took what I believed to be the most challenging courses offered at my school. There are students ahead of me in class rank who have much lower unweighted GPAs than I have, and some who have not even taken all of the hardest courses offered at my school (like AP US History). I obviously have nothing against them, they were smart enough to avoid getting screwed over. That said,
My question is: Should I indicate the above information on my application, and if so how do you suggest I go about it? If I asked my guidance counsler to confirm my statements, would that lend more merit to what I say? Is there really even that big a difference between 1/275 and 4/275 (I'm not in the top 1% right now)? Am I just paranoid about everything?
Again I apologize for the length of my post. Any opinions would be greatly appreciated!
|By Rhkid005 (Rhkid005) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 02:19 am: Edit|
You can explain it, but the best thing to do would be for your guidance counselor to explain (provided that s/he seems like a competent person) it. If you wanted, you could ask to see what exactly s/he is writing for those particular few sentences of your rec. to make sure that it is right. Even if it didn't get explained, Yale most likely would not care. 4/275 is GREAT, and Yale will care much more about grades in your real classes than anything else.
|By 80drofnats (80drofnats) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 10:40 am: Edit|
definitely have your guidance counselor do it if at all and not you, 4/275 won't hurt you, and the last thing yale wants is a kid in the top 2% whining about how he should be val, and i don't think you really have a case anyway
|By Rhkid005 (Rhkid005) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 11:10 am: Edit|
Yeah... with the whole Blair Hornstein scandal, anything that even resembles whining about wanting to have a better rank could be looked upon unfavorably by adcoms (I'm not saying that you're doing it, but it could appear that way to an adcom), so have your gc do it.
|By Justin871 (Justin871) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 12:09 pm: Edit|
Thank you both. I've been overreacting pretty badly. I'll talk to my gc about, shes a very competent woman, and see what she thinks. Other than that, I won't worry anymore. Thanks for calming me down.
|By Rhkid005 (Rhkid005) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 02:47 pm: Edit|
Schools like Yale don't automatically take the top kid or anything like that. As long as you're in the top 5% (or even the top 10%) and have something unique to offer, Yale will see no reason to not take you. I have heard lots of stories about kids at Yale and other similarly selective schools that got in over the more highly ranked kids. Yale knows that rank is superficial, esp among the highly ranked kids.
|By Kaspergutman (Kaspergutman) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 03:08 pm: Edit|
yeah, on 1, definitely don't whine. especially of you have a 4.0 (i assume your school does not give A+), it will for the most part speak for itself. if you say anything at all, do it in one or at most two sentences, eg: "I am ranked 4th despite perfect grades because new courses given greater weight in ranking were introduced after I had met the graduation requirements (health; technology) that those courses fulfill." don't give them too many details because they are busy people. but standing up for yourself and explaining the situation is always good.
|By Pre1321 (Pre1321) on Saturday, September 04, 2004 - 06:49 pm: Edit|
Hey, what times do you run in your events? I'm looking to walk onto the team as well if I get into Yale.
|By Justin871 (Justin871) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 11:22 am: Edit|
Thank you for summing it up in one sentence Kasper, that's really helpful. All three of you have given me very solid advice and I appreciate it.
Pre, I've run 1:59 in the 800 and about 4:34 in the mile, nothing spectacular. I want to hit 1:56 this year though; I didnt really improve much last year and, with luck, I'm due for a breakthrough. I only have :53 400 speed so I might move up to longer distances if I get the chance to run for Yale.
The track program sounds awesome. Apparently there are guys who didn't break 2:00 in high school who make the team and hold their own in practice against the 4:10 milers. I guess awesome teammates can really pull you along. I talked for a long time to a Yale runner and he loves it, they sound like a real close-knit group of guys.
|By Pre1321 (Pre1321) on Sunday, September 05, 2004 - 01:56 pm: Edit|
Justin, I also think the program sounds awesome. Now I only need to get in. We have similar times... I've run 2:02 4:39 and 10:15 in the deuce. Haven't talked much to the coach yet because I figure I'm not going to get recruited or anything and I'll talk to him if I get in EA. My email is Pre1321@aol.com. We should keep in touch. It would be great if we both get in and run on the same team.
|By Pebbles (Pebbles) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 12:48 am: Edit|
4th isn't a bad rank at all.... i'm ranked like between 5-10 have about HALF as many APs as you and applying to yale early
|By Jessc (Jessc) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:07 am: Edit|
I am a freshman here at Yale. I ws not top in my class but very interesting having done lots of theatre and I am a great writer.. If it makes you feel any better I got a 79 in math first semester jr. year and I got a 1 on AP Physics. I did have 5's in English. So you see I am outstanding in one dept and less than average in others. My college adviser added an addendum to her evaluation of me explaining why I got the 79 in math ( I was sick) and her evaluation was outstanding. Concentrate on you teacher recommendatins and get your college counselor to go all out for you. That means letting thhe admissions rep know that she personally endorses you. That holds a lot of weight. Its politics here too.
|By Pebbles (Pebbles) on Monday, September 06, 2004 - 11:46 am: Edit|
-_- except my guidance department is absolute crap. our counselors get switched almost every year, each of them are in charge of about 400 kids. They'd rather go on an extra break than help a couple of kids out who have been waiting for an hour in the office. I may have to explain the situation with our counselors...
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