I'm 14....applying to ivy's

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Discus: What Are My Chances?: September 2003 Archive: I'm 14....applying to ivy's
By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 09:59 am: Edit

i had posted something along these lines a couple days ago and received no feedback...so this is my last attempt.

it seems as if theres millions of students out there with good sat scores, high gpas, and crazy ec's...im one of them, but i think my circumstances are a bit unique...but you tell me.

as the title says, im 14 years old, and im a senior at osan american high school, korea. OAHS is a DoDDS school for military dependents, and i am also full korean and bilingual in korean.

my class rank is one or two..out of 35 or so, rank isnt calculated until the second semester, and theres a couple of new people from the states with tons of aps and what not. my school is pretty small, 275 students in grades 7-12.

ive also lived in germany, and the continental us, my GPA is 4.065, and i scored a 1450 on the SAT last year....740 m, 710 v... ive taken every AP course available at our school, which isnt much.... ap calc/us history (distance learning), biology, language, and literature.

i took the SAT II's last year too, but all were upper 600's so i am retaking them in october, hopefully all 750+.

i am involved in practically every extracurricular my school offers, minus cheerleading and chess club. Model UN, NHS,
Junior Science and Humanities symposium, Newspaper, ROTC, Color Guard, Drill team, and Kitty Hawk Air Society. i am the senior editor of the newspaper, i am president of MUN, color guard commander, NHS vice president, and a captain in ROTC.

my sports include varsity volleyball, and baseball. i also swim competitively, but through the base and not school. i am ranked second in korea in swimming. i was volleyball team captain last year also.

i play the piano, violin and guitar...all moderately well, and ill be 15 years old when i graduate....

sorry about the length of my post. i was wondering what everybody thought about the chances of me getting into harvard, mit, princeton, columbia, cornell, johns hopkins, and oxford maybe were.

thanks for your help~!

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 10:11 am: Edit

btw. if anyone is wondering, i skipped three grades. couldve been more- i hate school and wanted to get it over with as fast as possible, but parents held me back.... school is boring to say the least. but neccessary for college.


By Istalam (Istalam) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 10:38 am: Edit

hey, as a guy that skipped a couple grades himself i understand what your saying. I think you have a chance. Johns Hopkins would be the easiest of the bunch. Im also applying to oxford. It really depends on what degree and what college in oxford. You would need to imporve SAT II's for oxford and the rest. ALso what are you AP scores. But i think you can pose a chance, but i would also apply to lesser name schools as a back up.

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 10:39 am: Edit

hmm. i want to pursue a computer engineering/premed major. i hope to have my CCNA (cisco certified netowrking associate)certification by the end of this year. lol, nobody wants to comment?

must be because im korean. i swear i havent eaten dog ever in my life. hahaha, although supposedly it does taste good ;)

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 10:54 am: Edit

aigoo. these forums are pretty cool, but i dont like how your post gets moved to the top with each comment.

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 10:59 am: Edit

im subtley bumping my post. hahahha.. shhhhh

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 11:06 am: Edit

you know what. im going to sleep. im tired... lol, by the time i check this again tomorrow morning, my post will be at the bottom of the page. ho hum...

good night all~

By Bluebaron1616 (Bluebaron1616) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 01:49 pm: Edit

I think that people here think that your are boasting.


Chances are okay but not great, they don't really care if you are 10 or 20.

You need 1500 plus SAT scores.

By Evil_Robot (Evil_Robot) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 03:48 pm: Edit

They're not allowed to discriminate based on age. So you have no greater chance than someone who is 17. Sorry.

By Mythspinner (Mythspinner) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 04:17 pm: Edit

hey, greatsurgeon - I just had to post because I'll be 15 when I graduate too, but I'm not an international. You have so many things going for you, and I think you'll do incredibly well.

good luck,

By Fairyofwind (Fairyofwind) on Saturday, August 30, 2003 - 04:35 pm: Edit

wow, you're really amazing... but look at me: i graduated college when i was 3, had a daughter at age 12 and she has also just graduated college at age 3. i'm now 15 years old and the owner of macrohard, which will soon replace microsoft

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Sunday, August 31, 2003 - 02:34 am: Edit


By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Sunday, August 31, 2003 - 10:37 am: Edit


By Pookdogg (Pookdogg) on Sunday, August 31, 2003 - 12:01 pm: Edit

Well, I don't claim to be an expert on these sort of things, but I did attend SIS (Seoul Internat'l School) for a time, so I do know some stats.

Evil_Robot is right about age discrimination. It doesn't happen. If you graduated, then you graduated. It doesn't matter your age.

On being an international student, it's really a toss-up. For some reason, at SIS not very many people got into HYP. Quite a few went to the lower-tier Ivy Leagues and did quite well there. Perhaps SIS isn't as great academically as some other schools (it is a distinct possibility), or maybe they had a dry spell of exceptional students.

My final verdict is this: if your essays and recs are good, then you will stand a fairly good chance. If your essays are lacking at all, then it might be a little tough.

I'm not familiar with OAHS, but I assume it's a decent school.

By Rubenizm (Rubenizm) on Sunday, August 31, 2003 - 10:58 pm: Edit

i don't think they'll have any applicants at 14, i'd go as far as to call you a sure admit if i were on the addmisions board. On the other hand i don't think they'd like people who're still going through puberty. But seriously you should be fine with your scores and unique age.

By Magenta (Magenta) on Monday, September 01, 2003 - 12:27 am: Edit

First, I am not an admissions officer, just a parent. Your SAT scores are good, but do not seem stellar for MIT as far as the math goes (the other schools you noted, I think you are probably sitting just fine SAT wise, and even at MIT, I am sure they admit people with lower math SAT scores, but those students likely usually do have a "hook" of some sort). Your extra curriculars are numerous, but that *could* work against you as some could see this as just trying to have a laundry list of activities rather than having passion in certain areas; be sure to show passion of some kind in your essays. I don't see any "hooks" as far as something that would really be a shoe in (like being an Intel Science Talent Search finalist, Olympic gymnist, singer with the number one opera in the USA, male stripper for Chippendale's...okay, I am kidding about that last one, but know of applicants with all the other hooks), but truthfully, lots of people without such hooks do get admitted to top schools (ALL top schools).

As others have written, I don't think your age will particularly work for or against you. We were flown to Boston by one of our son's mentors to meet with MIT admissions (something they usually do NOT do - they usually have applicants meet with alumni in their home areas) and since our son was just 11 at the time, they wanted to be sure we weren't expecting him to live on campus (which is required for freshman, but our son would be a transfer student as he already had nearly the maximum credits one could have and apply as a transfer student there), but at 15, you'll be fine to live on campus as they arranged for us to have dinner with the youngest student these admissions people knew of to be an MIT student (he was a young 14 when he began and a 17 year old senior when we met him in October of 2002) and that guy lived on campus at age 14. I heard rumor from a higher up at our son's university that MIT doesn't like admitting young students as they feel it could make their university seem too easy if these young students do well, but I think that rumor rubish as the president of MIT (Charlie Vest) invited our son to meet with him in his office back when our son was 8 and giving a talk at MIT and the admissions people seemed *very* open to having our son there despite his age.

So long as you have the money (for both all the applications and the tuition at any of these colleges), I would suggest you apply to them all. You just never know until you try. Good luck!

By Arealtexan (Arealtexan) on Monday, September 01, 2003 - 09:46 am: Edit

Just a note about your application to Oxford - at 14 you no longer have a chance. Although Oxford occasionally accepted younger students at university, political circumstances in the UK have changed. Because of fear of paedophiles coming into contact with children in schools, teachers are now comprehensively vetted before being allowed to teach. This is a costly procedure, and Oxford is not willing to submit its tutors to it just so that it can teach a couple of precocious students.

Experiences with 'child prodigies' at Oxford and Cambridge in the past mean that universities in the UK are extremely hostile to the idea. (Children committed suicide/ran away/etc)

By Magenta (Magenta) on Monday, September 01, 2003 - 11:30 am: Edit

Never say never. I personally know of a 17 year old (just turned in June) attending the most prestigious of Cambridge's campuses now for his doctoral program and I suspect the rules about checking out all the person's professors is the same for a 17 year old grad student as a 15 year old undergrad (though I am not positive). If anyone wants, I could contact the kid (I have his email in England) and ask what the situation is for undergraduates versus graduates. Graduates often do have less professors as after the first two years, they usually are just working with a faculty advisor on their own research, so maybe that factors in, plus there is only one year where this guy will be under 18 there. And the guy did have at least one "hook" - he was a published Barry Goldwater Scholar (for those unfamiliar with it, the Barry Goldwater Scholar award is the most prestigious of the college level math and science awards; it's not quite the hook an Intel STS finalist has for applying to college, but it's close to this for applying to graduate school). But he wasn't a 4.0 (indeed, he had a D in a college English class and while he repeated the class for a higher grade, I believe the D stays on the transcript for all to see) nor active on campus far as I could tell (I think even his research was conducted mostly as his M.D. parents' places of work). He went for it, and got over $800K in scholarship money total (from different universities and private agencies, no doubt) and picked Cambridge as they had the most Nobel Prize laureates than any of the others or something. Now it *is* rare for Cambridge to take such a young grad student - I can't recall the number of years it has been since they have had one so young, but it was a long time.

I'd suggest contacting admissions at Oxford and asking if it's worth your time to apply. Arealtexan could be right as odds there are certainly lower than any other school you noted for just the reason he cited. I am just not sure the probability is zero, at least for a student with a hook.

By Arealtexan (Arealtexan) on Monday, September 01, 2003 - 11:39 am: Edit

Magenta, these rules were introduced this year. They don't apply to people admitted before the introduction of the extended vetting procedures. It's been in most of the newspapers in the UK.

There is in fact a 15 year old Philosophy student at Peterhouse, who was in the headlines two years ago when his local education authority turned down his request for funds to help him overcome his disability. And just out of interest, what is the "most prestigious college at Cambridge"??

By Magenta (Magenta) on Monday, September 01, 2003 - 08:03 pm: Edit

How odd. I posted a response earlier today and it's not here. :( Bummer, as it was rather detailed. But to answer your question, according to the article I read, Trinity is the most prestigious. I looked up how long it's been since they had a doctoral student so young at Cambridge and it's been since WWI.

I think one thing I noted in the lost post was that I wondered if England puts their K-12 teacher through extended vetting procedures as isn't child molestation more likely to occur within occupations where the employed have access to more pray? I've never read about college professors being pedophiles, not that there likely aren't some, but I just doubt it is THAT common. However, college professors (often married ones with kids yet) using their authority over grades *often* coerce regular aged students to have sex and yet we don't see any screening being done to prevent that, do we? And frankly, a bunch of those "used" students have a lower emotional maturity level than many of the <18 college students, so why they are using chronological age as the basis of trying to protect students can only be because it's the easiest.

By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Monday, September 01, 2003 - 10:36 pm: Edit

Magenta seems very well versed in this subject. I suggest you read her advice carefully. There are some schools that have specific programs for younger students such as Hopkins and CMU where you would see other kids your age. Other than that, many schools would consider you along with their regular applicant pool with no predjudice about age, positive or negative. As for your getting in, take a look at my post at "Why Bother Asking?" Stripping you of your age puts you into a long, line of applicants--how do you stand out?
Our system of admissions is quite unusual, very different from the European and Asian schools. Even perfect test scores and grades will not get you a guaranteed in. Also, if you are looking for financial aid, make sure you check for the policy at each school for foreign students. From what I've been told there is a shortage of aid. Harvard, Princeton, Yale, MIT and Williams, I believe (do check) are need blind for foreign students. Good luck. My little boy is best friends with a boy from South Korea who boards with his aunt during the school year so he can go to school here. We are looking forward to seeing him again next week.

By Arealtexan (Arealtexan) on Tuesday, September 02, 2003 - 01:38 am: Edit

The most likely reason they are using chronological age as the basis of trying to protect students is because having sex with people under 16 is illegal in Britain.

Could you post a link to the article which asserts that Trinity is the most prestigious college?

By Magenta (Magenta) on Tuesday, September 02, 2003 - 09:15 am: Edit

I'd rather not post the link here for reasons I could explain in private, but if you want, you can email me and I'll share it with you.

So if the age where it's illegal to have sex is 16, does this mean they are only concerned about students 15 and under taking courses on campus? If so, that would explain the 17 year old not being a problem.

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Tuesday, September 02, 2003 - 09:16 am: Edit

lol.... by 'our system of admissions' do you mean the american system? hahaha, i might be young, but ive lived in the states for maybe 8 years or so... ive been in and out of country. dad's military.

thanks all for the information. i guess oxford is out.... but i was wondering, maybe if i wrote something about my situation in my essay...... or not. any suggestions?

once again. thank you

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Tuesday, September 02, 2003 - 09:25 am: Edit

oh... btw. i dont think financial aid will be an issue. im planning on receiving either a NSA or DIA scholarship..... will no financial aid make things easier?

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Tuesday, September 02, 2003 - 09:30 am: Edit

hmm. im not seeing my new comments, but theyll probably show up sooner or later.

By Magenta (Magenta) on Tuesday, September 02, 2003 - 09:36 am: Edit

Justin, it could be that you didn't hit "post message" after your post showed up for your review...I think that might be how one of my messages was lost. If you aren't seeing it right after hitting "post message" then I don't think it will show up, sorry.

I can't speak for all the colleges you noted, but I know MIT is need blind in selecting candidates...they don't care if you are able to pay your way or need financial aid. This isn't to say I would rule out having a rich dad who has already given a ton to the university not giving you an edge, as no matter the university policy, I think such politics can enter into admissions decisions. But just not needing financial aid won't help you at MIT nor Harvard (as tons of people with money in the family apply to both).

By Masamune707 (Masamune707) on Tuesday, September 02, 2003 - 04:43 pm: Edit

hm im wondering why u skipped all those grades...it really doesnt help u that much even if u are 14 because they reli dont take ur age into account.

however, u have incredible potential. Heres my suggestion: apply when u are 17. Take the next couple of years to get a job and start making some money for urself. Take the time to find and develope a passion..the time u have is absolutely great! i would kill to be able to have a couple years free of school to be able to travel and see the world more..i definitely would recommend applying later so that u can up ur chances!

do some research! find a favorite book..go exploring do something! INVEST UR TIME. its the best thing u can do for urself..u are really lucky to have this free time to start doing things...take advanced classes at local community colleges! make an organization at ur school..maybe u can hang around ur school after u graduate and get a job tutoring students..who knows? ...all i am saying is that its great that u can have time to do all this because u can make urself look great =D good luck and choose wisely

By Magenta (Magenta) on Tuesday, September 02, 2003 - 07:03 pm: Edit

Justin can respond for himself as to why he skipped the grades, but I will guess it is because he felt bored in lower grades and wanted to move along.

Depending on the state, Justin might not be legally able to just jump into working rather than continuing with college. In our state, nuts though it is to me, we were informed that even if our son has his bachelor's at 13 (and it's looking like he'll have two), he HAS to continue to be in an educational environment till he is 16....now, this can mean graduate school or it can mean we make up a homeschool program that includes an education received at a place of work or from his own business (he very much wants to start his own company) or from traveling to other countries or whatever, but the state wants proof that a person is being educated in some ascertainable (note the "as*certain" in that) way till age 16.

I also want to note that going to college young and doing the other things you mentioned are not mutually exclusive events. Our son went to France this summer with the Honors College. Spring of 2001, he went to Monterey, CA for a conference (all expenses paid by the conference for all three of us) and had a nice week there (though one prof was clearly not pleased with our son taking this time out of the semester, but that's another story). Fall of 2001, he went to Germany (all expense paid trip as he was giving a presentation shortly after the head of Germany spoke, but we added our own money to take him to Brussels, Amsterdam, and Luxembourg). Spring semester he spent 9 days in Seattle (another all expenses paid trip as Microsoft Research asked him to come give an hour talk, but they paid I think for 5 days of hotel and we picked up the rest to go to Canada and sightsee more). And he's just gotten to travel a lot for all sorts of things (weddings, my birthday celebration in Disney and on the Disney cruise to the Bahamas, camps in other states, internships, etc.).

Lots of college students do research while in college. Our son spent time in a Howard Hughes Medical Institute lab involved in AIDS research at age 9 while in college and presented his paper at the end of the semester for credit. He read some 400+ page book cover to cover last night before bed. He considered getting a formerly active organization active again on campus his first semester, but decided he didn't want the group on campus enough to go to the trouble as there were too many other things already available on campus that he couldn't even do all those. But he did his own fundraiser for the Sept. 11th Fund that semester (designed sympathy cards for the survivors from the university faculty, staff, and student body and supplied those, envelopes, a stamp, and a survivor's address - best guess of them from the victims' names - to people for $2 each and then the proceeds went to the 9-11 Fund). He has tutored students in the math lab and helped kids in his computer science courses to study for exams as they request this assistance. He doesn't do this stuff to make him look great, though, but because he enjoys doing it. I really think that it the best reason for *anyone* to do what they do (as I noted elsewhere on this board today). His playing most every night for hours in the pool over the summer, building Lego stuff, going to lots of movies, etc. likely won't impress anyone, but so long as he is having a good time, that stuff is important in its own right.

But you note good things to do with your time. :)

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 07:08 am: Edit

why did i skip three grades? in my opinion, thats not enough-but my parents thought it wasnt wise to skip more...for various reasons. school bores me. i acquire and retain information rather quickly, so the pace the school curriculum moves at is way too slow.... in my ap lit class this year, were reading books i read when i was 9.... and so i hate school, i want to get it over with as fast as possible, although that would mean seeing my friends less and what not....

now magenta's son. genius? most likely....

there are some drawbacks to being young. hahaha, my friends dog on me sometimes when i cant get into clubs...etc, but im fine with it. oh, and for ROTC scholarships, and all of the military academies, you have to be 16 to apply :S


*btw, the posts dont show up immediately after you push post this message.. it takes quite a while

By Magenta (Magenta) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 09:16 am: Edit

Ack, I really don't like people even considering if our son is a genius when he has not made any major contribution to any field...I really wish people would leave that word for those people rather than just people who happen to have pretty strong gray matter, but my wish hasn't come true yet. I'm still working on this, though, by suggesting time and again that we reserve the word "genius" for *those* people.

When your friends dog on you about not getting into clubs, let them know that you'll be allowed into them at the same age they were and once you are, you'll easily attract these females who think that just because you graduate early, you must be some big brain who will earn tons of money someday (a conclusion people shouldn't draw, but all too often do, and in the meat market scene, you can easily just allow their myth to work to benefit your reality if you so choose).

My husband got an ROTC offer, but decided not to take it as he didn't want to have to be working cheap for the government when he got out of college, nor did he really have a desire to be volunteering himself to be killed in a war (though more power to those willing to make that sacrafice for their country). Things worked out very well for him with the other scholarship he took instead.

Odd that your messages don't show up immediately after you push "post this message" after previewing it as mine always have (other than maybe one time, though I am thinking that one time I never did hit "post" the second time to truly post it at all). I wonder what the reason is that yours don't always show up immediately and mine have. Now watch, *this* message won't post immediately!

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 10:08 am: Edit

yes. i feel the same way... a lot of times people mistakenly label me a 'genius' ...i just laugh and go on my way shaking my head...what actually makes a person a genius though? a high iq??? how about idiot savants? aigoo, im sure there are many people out there with crazy IQs who just sit on their butts all day long....

lmao paragrpah two.... word. ;)

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 10:13 am: Edit

oh. and by the way. thanks for all your help magenta. ~

good night

By Valpal (Valpal) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 10:14 am: Edit

Justin, if you are the dependent of an American military officer or enlistee, you don't fall under the category of "International Student". Your applications will be evaluated based on your status as an American citizen.

Your resume is very impressive for one so young. By the hard data, you qualify nicely for any number of top institutions in the U.S. Ironically enough, your tender age may work against you. Some adcoms might be concerned about how such a young person might fare at their institution. Having an unusually high intellectual capacity does not guarantee a equal level of emotional maturity. College is a tough adjustment, even for kids much older than you. I hope I don't sound condescending, but if you were my child, I'd not be comfortable with the idea of you living, unsupervised on a college campus. But that's just me...

Your parents must be extremely proud of you, Justin. I know I would be. Good luck with your future school.

By Magenta (Magenta) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 11:34 am: Edit

Justin, you're welcome for the help, and now you can help me a bit...what does "aigoo" mean? I am guessing IMAO = in my arrogrant opinion, but correct me if I am guessing that incorrectly.

Valpal, I think a decade or two ago, you are right that someone trying to enter college at 15 could run up against some road blocks just based on age, but other than community colleges (which sometimes have a minimum age 16 requirement) and it appears now England colleges, I don't think this will be a problem today. From what I gather by talking with admissions people and others, all the top 10 colleges have at least one 15 year old each year (again, this could be partly a "diversity" issue, though I doubt it for most top colleges). Just one year younger and the picture does seem to change, as while MIT seems to admit a number of 15 year olds, they have only admitted one 14 year old (well, he was 13 when he got the acceptance letter, but 14 when he started) that the admissions department knows about...but at the same time, they seemed rather open to our son coming there as a transfer student (i.e. he wouldn't have even been a freshman, but applying with just under 60 credits and heading there with closer to 80) even though he was just 11 when the admissions people met with him and would have just turned 12 if he indeed transfered there. His case might have been somewhat unusual, though, as he has mentors affiliated with MIT, one who contacted admissions about him (one runs a big name lab at MIT and is wanting our son in his lab for graduate school, the other is a National Medal of Technology, Inventors Hall of Fame, $500K MIT Lemelson Award winner who is a former graduate of MIT and soon to be adjunct faculty member there) plus our son had some unusual for college applicants "achievements" (he is the youngest in a book of the 1000 most creative people living in America - a book filled with big names in just about every field you can imagine from people like Bill Gates to Philip Glass to Michael Crichton to Marvin Minsky, etc. and he was on the first place team in a statewide business plan competition for undergraduates and graduates - it can impress some people that a 10 year old won against people with credentials like M.D.s, MBAs, etc. as people in residencies in the like also competed, but truly, he never would have come in first without the two other people on his team who were very versed in writing business plans while our son was very versed in answering technology questions). As irony would have it, our son was flying back from a camp in the summer of 2000 and as soon as the seatbelt sign went off after landing, this woman turned around and said she had been listening to our son talk and wondered if he had considered going to MIT and she gave him her MIT admissions business card and asked him to stay in touch...even though she had left MIT when our son was considering transfering, she contacted the current admissions people there and put in a good word for him, and that couldn't have hurt either.

But I still don't think anyone who has the money to apply AND would be able to afford going (which in Justin's case, might mean having parents willing to move to the expensive Boston area if they don't feel he is yet able to live on his own at 15) should not apply to a college they dream of attending for fear of being rejected due to age or anything else. There is only one way to know for SURE where you can and can't go and that's by applying. I say go for it. We regret in life more what we don't try than what we do so long as the thing isn't unsafe and/or immoral (like illegal drugs, robbing a bank, etc.).

By Magenta (Magenta) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 11:41 am: Edit

Argh, I forgot to note that I haven't seen anything supporting that early to college students are less emotionally mature than their 18+ year old classmates and indeed, have seen evidence for the opposite. High IQ students (which most of the early to college kids are) have been found to have higher DIT (Defining Issues Test) scores, thus showing their moral reasoning to be well higher than their peers (for example, our son at age 8 scored as a college educated adult, higher indeed than his college educated father, and were our morals lower, we'd still be giving my husband a ribbing for that!). My son at age 8 also scored about as high as one can score (and higher than I've heard of anyone else scoring) on a test of maturity in choosing friends (higher than I scored, and I think I choose my friends rather wisely!). I haven't heard of any early to college kids killing themselves yet, though they have far fewer numbers and so this could just be a numbers thing. I do know of a 15 year old who started college in Alabama and was every parent's nightmare (went from never kissed to having sex with the whole football team and the school mascot, stealing from her parents for a drug habit, etc., but a similar story took place at the same time with a 14 year old honors student in a traditional high school who even maintained her position on the track team during her nightly escapes from home to have sex with immigrants at Motel 6 or wherever). It's not like NO early to college kids don't screw up in college due to lack of emotional maturity, but *ratio* wise, I have seen no evidence that they are a more at risk group. However, this might (though I doubt it) also be due to most colleges more carefully screening young applicants than typical aged applicants.

By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 02:33 pm: Edit

There are colleges, Carnegie Mellon and Johns Hopkins to name a few who have programs for young kids going for a degree. A friend of mine's daughter graduated from such a program at age 15 with a double major. She just finished law school at age 18 but cannot take the bar until she is 21. She is a lovely girl who is very impressive to meet, just as a person, not as a young prodigy as she is often labeled. One thing she liked about her undergraduate program was that because it was a group of young kids, she had peers with some of the same issues that were classmates. Until then she had felt quite apart from kids her age.
My close friend from college started her undergraduate work at age 14, and again was with a group of kids in a program. Her best friend was the youngest mathematician accepted to the program at that time, 30 years ago. He went on to a PHD program at MIT without getting his undergraduated degree--never did get a degree. Is now a happy small business owner, saw him featured in an alum magazine showing us where all of these very young college student went 30 years hence. Most were well adjusted, but I was surprised that none of them made their mark onto academia or the world as was expected at the time. None would put their children in such programs, they said.
However, my friends daughter has absolutely no regrets. She wants to take voice lessons at a conservatory and audition for performance for a few years before taking the bar and looking for employment. She is looking into PHD programs, she is ever so enthusiastic about the prospects life has to offer her, and she has all the time in the world.
There is a book, Terman's Kids that tracks a group or groups of genius children over their lifetime. It is fascinating. Again most of the children grew into happy, well adjusted adults.
Magenta, did you end up enrolling your son at MIT? Or is he studying locally? There was an 11 year old who got his phd from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh a few years ago. Don't know what he is doing now. Again a delightful child, just very academically advanced and ready for challenges in education. Don't know what he did after graduating.

By Magenta (Magenta) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 04:50 pm: Edit

First, never heard of the 11 year old who got his Ph.D. from Duquesne and would love a citation for that story as the last I heard (and I think this was as recently as two years ago), Michael Kearney was still the record holder for the youngest to get any sort of graduate degree (in his case, a masters) and he was 12 at the time he earned it. I confess I am skeptical about an 11 year old getting a Ph.D. anytime recently as this is no longer the day of John Nash where doctorates are commonly earned in 3 years - many take 5-7 years (I know the one our son is desiring to enter does) and even if it just took a kid 4, it would mean entering a doctoral program at age 7. Something tells me I would have heard about that, but like I said, post a citation as I would love to see I am wrong (I love stories of people starting stuff younger than our son as then when people get bug-eyed over our son's doing whatever, I can say, "Hey, it's nothing - so and so did this X years earlier.").

As for our son, no, we did not enroll him in MIT. That decision was one we really could have done without (and would have done without were it not for one mentor in particular feeling our son simply *must* transfer there) and without a doubt, the toughest our family has made to date. There were tons of factors considered, and our son made a weighted pro and con list as did I (my husband just sort of felt whatever we felt was okay by him, though he was active in the discussions). The major factor for our son was financial - while the mentor made a very generous offer of picking up over half the tuition price (as MIT has NO merit scholarships), it left us with still having to pay quite a bit of tuition AND the price of living in the Cambridge area is insane (just a 2 bath apartment with a galley kitchen and living room - no family room or breakfast room or playroom or office, etc. - was fetching $3,600/month in October of 2003 as we knew a professor on sabbatical at MIT that year who had us over to his family apartment and was willing to disclose the price of his rent). We could swing it without taking loans as we've got a good deal in savings, BUT it would mean my husband retiring at a later date, giving up lots of the cultural stuff we do (like we paid the $125 per seat ticket price for "O" in Las Vegas a few weeks ago - sure would not be doing that if having the bills we'd have if our son went to MIT) and lots of travel (just one Honors College trip abroad runs students over $4K each, and we really feel travel adds to a person's understanding of the world and other people and more far more than an upgrade in tier of college, but that is just *our* feeling) and in general living in the style in which we are accustom to living (and I *have* taken a huge drop in living style before when I married my husband and WOULD do it again if we felt it truly worth it, but none of us here did). My mother died at 52 and while she saw much of the world (mostly on business travel) and had a charmed life overall, her death (or actually finding her journal 10 years following) really turned me into a "live for today while planning for tomorrow" type...I won't sacrafice a bunch now if I don't feel it highly likely to be worth it later. We put the max the law allows into retirement plans, for example, as we feel that will be worth it down the road (with the market, though, we could be very wrong), but our son isn't someone we feel *needs* the elite college edge - he learns well on his and has a good head on his shoulders (not just academically, but as far as his wisdom) and we suspect he will do fine without an MIT or other elite college undergraduage degree. We could regret the decision here years down the road, but we did what felt best at the time.

Some other factors that entered into it were learning from the youngest student admissions knew of to start MIT's that he usually eats just one meal a day and could never get any dates even at the age of 17 and the girls in his dorm seemed to completely ignore him (our son actually gets invited to movies and dinner and stuff with college gals at his campus, not that he is "dating" them at his age, but at least they include him in things, and these girls in the MIT dorm paid a lot more attention to our son that the 17 year old, which was weird) and he spent nights every now and again never going to bed so he could finish problem sets even though he said he wasn't a big procrastinator and he wasn't active much in extracurriculars (where our son was on the crew team and soon to run for SGA at his current campus and we doubted if people would accept him in either at a college with a top crew team and with a population that lacks diversity as most everyone is just 15 to 22)...it all just didn't sound appealing to us. Our son was happy where he was, so we failed to see the *need* to transfer him (where this one mentor felt the *need* was that our son should be allowed to move faster and be taking graduate courses no later than this fall - which he has been invited to do at his own university by various professors and so it's not like he needed to transfer to do this, but the mentor felt the level of thinking going on at MIT to be higher overall, which I don't dispute, and that our son *needed* to be around champion thinkers just as a prodigy on the violin should be trained by a world class violinist...we just didn't buy the whole "need" thing and the mentor was upset with our making what he called "an unacceptable decision" - which was rather uncomfortable as we were staying at the man's house that weekend).

Another factor was friends our son's age...our son has those having grown up in the same house all his life (not counting 1994 when we lived in another state M-F and commuted back to this state on weekends so he could continue to have continuity and roots), but if we moved him and he was living in a place with mostly adults and having to study his buns off (which he didn't have to do at all last semester even with 21.5 credits and SGA and crew, etc.), when we have opportunity for things like he is doing today (tap dance lesson with other kids and magic club meeting with other kids) or just free time to play with Geofix or straw houses or whatever? Our son in entitled, we feel, to time to be with other kids his age doing things kids do (and indeed, younger kids his age, as he even played tag, Simon Says, and Hot and Cold with 5 and 6 year old boys over the summer and had himself a fine time).

Okay, so that was all more than you wanted to know (though still not all the factors considered by any means), but there it is.

I am familiar with the book on the "Termites" and found it a relief when our son was still quite young and I was reading that book to see that that group had a lower divorce rate, higher self-rating of happiness, lower rate of mental illness, and overall better outlook than the population at large. None of them became eminent and this isn't too surprising as eminent people mostly come from the very rich or the very poor - according to Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi's book "Creativity", only *10%* of creatively eminent people he found to study came from middle-class families; the majority of about 34% had father who held intellectual positions such as professor, writer, orchestra conductor, or research scientist...30% came from quite poor families (fathers were farmers, poor immigrants, or blue-collar workers)...and 25% had fathers who were lawyers, phyicians, or wealthy businessmen. These are proportions wildly different from the general society (what percent is "middle" class? Way more than just the 50% in the middle, seems to me!). Terman's subjects were mostly from the middle-class, those who are comfortable and complacent rather than rebels or feeling the need to keep up some high class lifestyle or image. If our son doesn't become eminent (and odds are greatly favoring that he won't be even with his having almost every *personality* characteristic of those who are), it will most likely be because he came from parents who are happy in life and not telling him he needs to do more than his no-name parents...that just being a law abiding, moral (I have told him if he cheats on a spouse, my respect for him will be flushed down the toilet), and self-supporting who is mentally and physically healthy (not that he can control either of those completely, but to the point where he can) is good by us. I think that will be a far bigger impact on his "need* to do big things in life (which he was actually born possessing) than whether he goes to MIT or not (though again, things are interwined as were we multi-millionaires, he perhaps WOULD be going to MIT, though even then I am not *positive* as I didn't calculate the pro and con list with no financial elements and am not sure the others wouldn't still have weighed against that move).

Got to run. Someone here needs a ride to tap.

By Valpal (Valpal) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 07:15 pm: Edit

Greatsurgeon, this thread started out being about you. Are you still there? What do your parents think of the idea of you living on your own while going to school? Would they remain in Korea while you attend college?

By Magenta (Magenta) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 07:24 pm: Edit

Jamimon, I have time to respond to a few other things from your post now. First, I found it interesting that of the young college students at MIT (and how many were there, as I am not familiar with many at all from there, as I am from Hopkins) featured 30 years later in your alum magazine (so I am guessing you are an MIT grad, or is that your husband?), not ONE would put their own children in such programs...by "such programs" did they mean MIT *undergraduate* programs at a young age or *any* college program at a young age? I have a friend who got his doctorate in nuclear engineering from MIT and his eldest child had a very high GPA and class rank and strong SAT scores and lots of ECs (good athelete, for one), etc. and could have applied to MIT, but the guy felt like MIT was a real pressure cooker for undergrads where it was fine for grad students (in HIS day, I think things have changed at MIT in more recent years, at least from the time our son has spent at one of the graduate labs at MIT and from talking with the students in it), and he also thought the tuition there out of whack for the added value of world class teaching (so his daughter is now at a state U out of our state and on a scholarship).

Norbert Wiener, who didn't get his degrees at MIT but taught there, started college at age 11 at Tufts and got his bachelor's at age 14 and then went straight to Harvard at age 14 for graduate work. He went to Cornell (on a scholarship) between time studying zoology and philosophy at Harvard, where he then graduated at age 18. I read his book "Ex-Prodigy" (a number of people recommended this book to me when they learned my son was in college early) and Wiener also said he wouldn't want his own children in college young. He felt he was always socially awkward and wrote it off to being in college early. This hasn't impacted our feelings regarding our son being in college young as our son has never felt socially awkward and more than comments on his intellect, he gets comments on how incredibly good he is socially with people of all ages and types (like this summer, he was out of state doing an internship and so quickly made friends with people at the pool that he was invited to a 10 year old's birthday celebration, a 1 year old's birthday celebration, to play at a 3 year old's house, and to go on a whale watching tour with a 14 year old...he also was invited to go swing dancing several times with a venture capitalist he had met at a VC conference over a year prior and he had an 11 year old girl visiting him for the day from 90 minutes away and another girl about his age sending him a snail mail card and emailing him once she got back to her home state).

But who knows what our son's feelings will be in another 30 years...nobody. The JHU people interviewed lots of very accelerated kids, though, and I am pretty certain the overwhelming number in *their* study said they absolutely *would* encourage their children, were they similar to themselves intellectually, to follow the same path. I wish I knew of a link for that article.

BTW, I don't believe Johns Hopkins is as keen on young students anymore. Julian Stanley gave a talk at Hopkins (one the CTY days) back in 1999 about how he felt young college students would be wiser to go to the programs like Mary Baldwin and some early college program in the state of Washington - programs where large groups of similarly young students learn and live together - than to live side by side with regular aged college students. I agree that in general, a young student (as in under 14 - after that it gets less clear to me and would more depend on the actual individual) living with young adults (many of whom on many campuses are cohabitating and showering together no matter if it is "allowed" by written rules, not to mention various other things which go on) is not a good idea. I think people of all ages are better off spending time with people of all ages (which is one reason I listen to -via boards - many teens and college and graduate students online and chat with college students in 3D on campus as well as belong to a group with mostly ARP eligible members), and if you are living on a college campus, this is tougher to do no matter if you are 18 or 8 or 28...the campus often consumes your time and who you hang out with. So truly, much as I know this will have people blasting me as they loved living on campus in college and have kids loving it now, I happen to suspect people have a more well rounded college life if they actually are living close to but not *on* campus (even an apartment off campus will usually suit the purpose here, I am guessing, as my husband went that route after his first year of college and had a life outside of campus). But our culture certainly loves the boarding on campus approach, and it's not like I think it is *awful*, so please don't read my wrong there. I do think morals change more for people living on campus than commuting from the home their parents own, too. For example, at the undergraduate school I attended (very large state U), I didn't know a single female (males I am not as sure about) who finished freshman year on campus without, how shall I put this...giving it up. Meanwhile, a number of gals I knew who opted to commute graduated virgins (and we can debate which is the better way to graduate, but let's not and just agree there might be a difference here if *my* friends were representative of the big picture, which I grant they might not have been). The apartment dwellers seemed between these other two groups in their sexual, drug, etc. activities. Now the elite schools could be (no, make that I feel rather confident ARE) a whole other deal here, too...a recent article on sexual activity on Harvard's campus nearly made me think they should adopt a school uniform and it should be that of the nun and monk. ;) So if you want your child concentrating more on hitting the books than hitting on people they feel have good looks, here's another pro for the top colleges! :)

Oh, I want to clarify something about the guy who went to a doctoral program at MIT without the undergraduate degree (something our son's early childhood pediatrician, whose own son just started at MIT, suggested might make sense for our son back when our son was 8 but which was first suggested to us by a woman in our son's book discussion group whose cousin had an IQ over 200 and had his Ph.D. at 19 and she felt if her cousin had it at 19, our son should have it way earlier just because our son seemed way smarter to her than her cousin, but the idea of skipping undergraduate school for an 8 or 9 year old just seems nuts to me). Did you say he never got any degree at all, meaning just a high school degree in the end, or just never got a college of doctoral degree but at least had the masters en route to the Ph.D. which he didn't finish?

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Wednesday, September 03, 2003 - 09:30 pm: Edit

i think id be more comfortable going to a 'normal' college with people my friend's ages.... even though my friends and i are 2-3 years apart, were still pretty close, and they accept me for who i am.... hopefully people at college will be similar.

my parents dont mind me living by myself at 15, in a college environment.... theyll continue to live in korea after my dad retires from the military and gets a contracting or government position. im looking foward to college, and living on my own.... which is basically what i do right now anyways... well..not in a physical sense, but my parents pretty much leave me alone and provide financial support....

im still here. dont worry. my ap computer science DL class isnt starting for another week, so im just killing some time...

just a question.. so id have a chance at getting into harvard........etc?

By Y17k (Y17k) on Thursday, September 04, 2003 - 02:39 am: Edit

umm magenta, if your son did achieve all things you said he did, then of course hes a ••••••• genius. i don't know whether you were really being humble or just trying to subtly boast your son's achievements, but yes, he is a genius.

and greatsurgeon, i think you'd have a wonderful chance, not only because your scores are great, but because of your young age. People who say that the age won't matter are just jealous ^^

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Thursday, September 04, 2003 - 07:07 am: Edit

aigoo. my post dissapeared. here goes again... aigoo means *sigh* kind of... its korean, and is short for aigoo chamnawon... but aigoo is commonly used. it has no english compliment, and is used quite frequently. when youre pissed off... AIGOO... when youre tired AIGOO.. when youre frustrated... AIGOO. when you have nothing to say AIGOO... hahaha. aigoo... when you feel like saying aigoo.... Aigoo

aigoo......this better show up

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Thursday, September 04, 2003 - 08:24 am: Edit

...will taking a couple of university of maryland classes help with college.... my senior schedule is as follows:

AP Computer Science Distance Learning
Cisco Networking II
AP Literature
Guitar I

ive pretty much exhausted all my AP options, and this is the most rigorous schedule possible.... since ive taken every other class.....

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Thursday, September 04, 2003 - 09:32 am: Edit

tbat is.. UM in korea...

By Anotherdad (Anotherdad) on Thursday, September 04, 2003 - 12:50 pm: Edit

Contact Johns Hopkins and ask about their program and what they can say about other schools that take young graduates. I doubt your age gives you much advantage unless you show exceptional maturity or an outstanding specific achievement. An overemphasis on getting into the top Ivies won't cut it. Play up your swimming and volleyball -- and apply to schools with strong programs in those.
PS -- My mother graduated from HS at 12 and was head nurse at an obstetrics ward at 15. She always regretted missing a normal childhood.

By Magenta (Magenta) on Thursday, September 04, 2003 - 01:33 pm: Edit

Y17K, just because my son did all things I've said he did does not (in *my* usage of the word) make him a genius. I just used dictionary.com to look up the online dictionary definitions of the word and found these usages:

1. Extraordinary intellectual and creative power.

Okay, on this *one* I could say *maybe* as he clearly was extraordinary intellectually and creatively in his very early years, and he certainly doesn't seem too shabby intellectually now (and his wit is still pretty creative and some other stuff he does, I guess), but I am not sure I would call his creative power "extraordinary" today (even if someone one felt such and that got him in a book on creative Americans). I don't mean to be giving the all too annoying GT coordinator line of "they all even out" here, but I really do think our son stands out less and less the older he gets.

2. A person of extraordinary intellect and talent: “One is not born a genius, one becomes a genius” (Simone de Beauvoir).

And here, I don't think he has any given *talent* which is extraordinary, other than *maybe* public speaking and nobody calls someone a genius for that. Our son has told people he *aspires* to becoming a genius, but in his meaning I think he means doing things others haven't before as far as inventions and the like go and not a talent like music (which he loves and does have an innate talent in which we haven't nurtured and get lectures about from people often for that) or art (wait, if we count *photography* as an "art" form, then he does have some unusual talent there, perhaps) or the like. It's hard to explain, but I just don't see our son as a genius on this definition either.

3. A person who has an exceptionally high intelligence quotient, typically above 140.

Now this is probably the definition you and others use, and one which our son easily qualifies (he scored a mental age in the 20's when he was 7, so he makes the mark here with lots of room to spare), but note that it's number 3 here and not the first or second definition (within a first definition, I know). It's also to me belittling the word even from an IQ stand point as about 1% of the population has an IQ over 140 and do we really feel 1 out of 100 people to be geniuses?

1. A strong natural talent, aptitude, or inclination: has a genius for choosing the right words.

Yeah, he's quite good (I am tempted to say too good) at choosing the right words (was giving me more precise words to use in my business letters when he was only 2, for example), but again, is that really reason to call someone a genius? According to the online dictionary, perhaps, but not in "my book" - I just have a different image of this word.

2. One who has such a talent or inclination: a genius at diplomacy.

Again, our son is just on the SGA, he isn't president of the country or the like (though several people have told him they think he will be or should be president of the country someday, he knows I will not support such a venture and a man running for office isn't likely to win if he has a mother making the public statement, "No, don't vote him in - I want his family to be able to go about life without being followed by the Secret Service!").

3. The prevailing spirit or distinctive character, as of a place, a person, or an era: the genius of Elizabethan England.


4. pl. ge·ni·i (jn-) Roman Mythology. A tutelary deity or guardian spirit of a person or place.


5. A person who has great influence over another.

Ha, he could be said to fit here, but lots of people have great influence over others and that doesn't make them geniuses.

6. A jinni in Muslim mythology.

Ah, no.

> i don't know whether you were really being humble or just trying to subtly boast your son's achievements, but yes, he is a genius.

I was being neither humble nor boastful - purely trying to state the facts and my conception of the word "genius" (which I admitted is not the only perception of this word in society today, but I am also not alone in my feelings on what the word means).

> and greatsurgeon, i think you'd have a wonderful chance, not only because your scores are great, but because of your young age. People who say that the age won't matter are just jealous ^^

While I agree that Justin has a great chance, I really don't think the young age will hurt or help him overall, as I stated earlier, and it's not because I am jealous. Having a young kid in college, I have gotten to know many other families who have young kids in college and also gotten to chat with a number of admissions people across the country in seminars and the like and some admissions people actually do NOT like the younger kids in college, but I don't think 15 will be so young as to hurt Justin's odds, but I haven't heard any wanting to grab young bright kids in general. At our son's university, they seem actually stricter about the young kids than the 15+ students as to at least the SAT score...I know one applied at 12 and was rejected even though her scores were well higher than many of the students on campus....they seem to want to scores to be that much higher still to prove there is really a "need" or to compensate them for taking the risk of having a young student on campus who could be kidnapped or who knows what. Rather than think, "Hmm, a 1300 from an 11 year old is far more unusual than a 1600 from a 16 year old, let's give this kid a full scholarship," they hold the kids to the exact same standards for scholarships as regular aged students (someone said this was because actuaries check who gets the scholarships and could care less the age of the student as that isn't factored into their formula or something) and it seems to me, *higher* standards for admission. And this is just as a state U, not a top tier university (actually, the private colleges might be better here as they don't have to use state approved formulas).

By Magenta (Magenta) on Thursday, September 04, 2003 - 01:37 pm: Edit

Anotherdad, what exactly did your mother miss in childhood that she regrets?

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Friday, September 05, 2003 - 09:27 am: Edit

probably her childhood????

ah who cares about childhoods... the teenage years is where all the fun stuff happens ;)

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Friday, September 05, 2003 - 09:31 am: Edit

probably her childhood????

ah who cares about childhoods... the teenage years is where all the fun stuff happens ;)

By Magenta (Magenta) on Friday, September 05, 2003 - 09:44 am: Edit

Well people often say they missed their childhood, but I'd like to know specifically what is meant by that....time with other kids their age, time playing certain games, free time, what?

My guess is what makes for one person's "happy childhood" and another's will vary. And truly, I don't think one should wait till the teenage years to have fun...indeed, I think people should be having fun ALL their lifespan, but I am a bum so this could be why. I certainly don't think the teen years are the funnest for many people - I liked my teens years just fine, but my best year of life to date was in my 30's. :O

And can you believe you didn't get a response when you started a thread before....only goes to show that if at first you don't succeed, try, try again! :)

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Friday, September 05, 2003 - 10:12 am: Edit

lol.... more than half of those posts were yours though ;)

By Magenta (Magenta) on Friday, September 05, 2003 - 11:02 am: Edit

Okay, well, you got me started, though. And let's not look at what ratio of words were mine as that will just upset me. I so wish I could follow my 12th grade English teacher's advice and write less, and if I felt I had more time or the inclination to edit, I would indeed write less. My apologies for being lazy and free associating!

By ~the_Chosen~ (~the_Chosen~) on Friday, September 05, 2003 - 06:32 pm: Edit

I know who you are. =) Very immature when I met you. You may be intellectually mature, but you aren't socially mature. That won't be a big problem for you in college if you don't make it one. Goodluck on your admission chances man, you have a great shot for the ivies. But for med school, go to JHU

TAHS Valedictorian 03'

Cornell c/o 2007

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Friday, September 05, 2003 - 07:24 pm: Edit

lol. i think that might be one of the chau (sp) brothers... hahaha, dude that was like 2 years ago? ive changed a lot... but thanks. hahaha and were playing TAHS today volleyball. ;)

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Friday, September 05, 2003 - 07:34 pm: Edit

man. he must like these boards.

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Saturday, September 06, 2003 - 11:06 pm: Edit

wow. i thought this thread got deleted

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Sunday, September 07, 2003 - 02:54 am: Edit

bump :o i said it

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Sunday, September 07, 2003 - 07:03 am: Edit

is there anyway to close a thread???

By Magenta (Magenta) on Sunday, September 07, 2003 - 10:16 am: Edit

I don't know if there is anyway to close a thread, but why do you want it closed? If it's because some guy who knows you said he thought you are socially immature, I sure wouldn't let that bother you as you don't seem it from what you've written here. You stated facts about yourself and didn't sound conceited in doing so, you apologized for the length of your post (something I should probably do every post but rarely do as it would get too ridiculous), you thanked people in advance for their advice...I saw nothing socially immature. Calling someone immature in public, however, as was done to you here, could be called socially immature, especially if he could have written you in private (as I am guessing he could have), and I'm being socially immature (more like lazy, no, make it both) in also noting such a thing in public rather than private. So you seem more socially mature than at least two older than you people here. :)

I'm confused as to why you are bumping if you also want to close or delete the thread....and did you try deleting the thread and it didn't work or why did you think it deleted? I have a pet peeve about "bump"s as it puts a notice in my email that there is something new to read in the thread when all that is new is "bump" and I hate that...at least you made yours a bit funny by adding, ":o i said it" but all the same, DON'T DO THAT! ;) As with appealing in a courtroom, try to have at least one new thing to add if you're going to take people's time. And I won't say the "bump" is socially immature as it seems lots of people years older than you do it, so it just seems typical (much though you can tell I wish it weren't). But then who I am - queen of the long ramblings and digressions - to complain about bumps, I know? :)

By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Monday, September 08, 2003 - 09:08 am: Edit

lol!!!! did anybody read about the 12 year old chinese med student in chicago??? thats crazy

By Amylase (Amylase) on Monday, September 08, 2003 - 09:28 am: Edit

Here is a personal story.
I applied to ivy at 15. Unfortunately i got rejected by all of them.

My stats back then are follows

SAT 1330


By Greatsurgeon (Greatsurgeon) on Monday, September 08, 2003 - 10:29 am: Edit

ehhhhh. what happened?

By Magenta (Magenta) on Monday, September 08, 2003 - 10:30 am: Edit

Amylase, how many Ivy colleges did you apply to and which were they? I would think Brown would be the best bet with the SAT I score, which will likely kick you out at most others, unfortunately, unless you are also a sought after athlete, actress, whatever. Colleges really don't seem to slide the scale for the SAT I based on the student being younger (i.e. they don't "get" that a 1330 from a 10 year old, say, is actually more unusual than a 1550 from a 17 year old).

Greatsurgeon mentioned the 12 year old medical student in Chicago...he is actually a Ph.D./M.D. student and one of the most impressive academic minds in a child I have read about as he not only scored a 1500 on the SAT at age 8 or 9, he scored a 40 or 41 on the MCAT at age 12 (Harvard Medical School's average is a score in the mid-30's) as well as getting a perfect score on the GRE analytical and math sections at 12. He did his BS in bio in just 3 years with all A's and one B (a B he felt he didn't deserve and I don't doubt his opinion here). But guess what? U of Chicago, who gave him a full ride for his Ph.D./M.D. (and that is a very unusual thing - full rides in medical school are not common, I am pretty sure), REJECTED him for undergraduate school back when the kid was 9, despite his 1500 SAT. I said at the time, "What fools" and yet they somehow didn't tick the kid off such that he refused to take their off for doctoral study there, so they might not have been such complete fools in the end (this kid will likely pay for some big campus building for the med school or something someday). Anyway, my point it that lots of schools are afraid when it comes to taking young students (and perhaps more afraid for females than males), so don't take it personally. If you go to graduate school, hopefully they won't care about your age then and you'll have the GRE scores in line with people a few years older.

Where are you now? Are you happy there?

By Anotherdad (Anotherdad) on Thursday, September 11, 2003 - 05:22 pm: Edit

Back in the Depression (yes, younguns, it really did exist), it was easy to miss out on childhood, what with being hungry and working when you were out of school. Back then many kids could not afford to stay in high school until graduation, let along think of college. My mother said she missed doing things that kids normally did because of work and study pressure, and consequently missed out on having close friends. And -- as greatsurgeon points out -- although the teenage years are a good time for fun, I suspect that completing a nursing degree at ages 12-14 rather cuts into the carefree days of youth.
Basically, it hurts me to see someone complaining that school bores them so he might as well graduate at 15. Hint -- the Ivies want people with a love of learning and are capable to exploring the world with enthusiasm. I don't think your prospects for the Ivies are very good.

By Magenta (Magenta) on Thursday, September 11, 2003 - 07:34 pm: Edit

I had a long post that my computer crashed before I hit "submit", so let me try to recreate it again as best I can.

Another dad, I am sorry your mother feels she missed out on fun in her teen years. :( I actually feel ALL ages are the time for fun, but hate to see anyone feel any stage of life wasn't fun. And it sounds like Greatsurgeon might be missing out on fun due to not having a challenging enough or interesting enough academic atmosphere. Boredom isn't anything that anyone at any age should have to feel necessary overall (a bit here and there is one thing and most everyone *does* have to tolerate that, but to have this be the overwhelming feeling is showing a poor match of some kind).

I hope Greatsurgeon shares with us where he does get in as I have my suspicion that he will get admitted into at least one Ivy if he applies to a number of them. Yes, Ivies want people with a love of learning and capable to explore the world with enthusiasm, but just because someone is bored in school doesn't mean they lack either of these. Ben Franklin wasn't thrilled with formal education (and had LOTS of stress working for an abusive older brother in a candle shop, so the historical records say) and I believe quit formal education at age 12, but he was better educated (in his own self-taught manner) than most college graduates today from any Ivy school (my humble opinion).

And lots of Ivy colleges DO take young students (and 15 isn't even going to be thought of as that young for them), as do other colleges with top programs in the field of interest to the young student. Here is a sampling of but a few young college student stories...


The above guy started college at 12, graduated from U of Michigan with a perfect 4.0, interned for the Clinton Administration in 1995, started Yale Law School at 19 (where he *did* feel he lacked maturity, so he left there at 20, but how many 18-22 year old students leave UNDERGRADUATE schools each year feeling they lack maturity, so feeling
unsure of one's life at that age is hardly unique to early to college students), then he went to England for three years and earned a degree
in Sociology from Oxford and a degree in Politics and Sociology from Cambridge simultaneously. The guy has also graduated from Stanford University’s School of Education (studying in an interdisciplinary program that included courses from the Law School, Graduate School of Business, and the School of Humanities and Sciences), attended Dartmouth, graduated from both Columbia University's Graduate School of Architecture and Teachers College in one year, and has both studied and served as a Tutor and Teaching Fellow at Harvard. Doesn't seem that starting college at 12 hurt him in having Ivy colleges feel he was capable of exploring the world with enthusiasm (granted, he was older than 15 when he attended the Ivy colleges, but not all other have been).

Norbert Wiener graduated from Harvard at age 18 with his Ph.D. (got his bachelors from Tufts at age 14) and made quite the name for himself. Now here is a man who DOES write (in "Ex-Prodigy" - a book Greatsurgeon and others wishing to start college should likely read before doing so) that he felt his going to college young stunted his social and emotional maturity, but my *guess* is that this guy (as with so many who study math and science at a typical age like John Nash) would have lacked social skills and maturity even if he stayed with agemates as he was already having issues in these areas back when he was in elementary school with his chronological peers. Greatsurgeon doesn't *seem* to me to be the type to not get alone with peers or other age groups, but he would be the better one to judge that, not either of us.


The above links are about a Miss America contestant this year who is 22 and an M.D. (she began college at 14). She also has played cello with 5 major orchestras (so clearly DOES have talent). No sign of her having regrets of early college yet, but she is still in her early 20's, so who knows how she'll feel later in life. And talk about hurting...it hurts me to see how many people ask her over and over again if she doesn't regret missing out on childhood and if her parents pushed her...people fail to recognize that we don't all grow our feet at the same speed nor do we all grow intellectually at the same speed and one size does NOT fit all, and just because some kid wears a size 10 man's show at age 10 doesn't mean he was forced into big shoes and neither does someone going to college young mean they were pushed into it. Plus, what is an ideal childhood for one person is not always going to be the ideal childhood for another person.

Moving to someone a bit older...


This guy started college at age 12, finished his dual major at age 15 (and the website doesn't note this, but he graduated with a perfect 4.0 even while going around the globe giving concerts) and all his doctoral courses finished at age 18 (he didn't actually get any Ph.D., like that website makes it seem, as he decided he didn't have a need to do a disseration since he was already having a good time making good money as a professional solist). This guy is in his 30's now, has never had regrets about starting college young and has strong relationships with his parents and his older sister (who also went to college early, got a 4.0 I believe, was a professional musician for a few years, and is now in law school and also has no regrets about starting college young).

Got to run, so can't recreate the entire former attempt here, but there's a start.

Oh, and let's not forget Sho Yano, now 12 and in a Ph.D./M.D. program (one of the top medical programs in the USA) on a full ride after graduating college in 3 years at age 12 and scoring a 40 or 41 on the MCAT when the average for Harvard Medical School is in the mid-30's. He has no regrets yet, but again, time will tell.

By Kimfuge (Kimfuge) on Saturday, September 13, 2003 - 12:03 am: Edit

harvard and princeton might be a reach for you but i think you have generally a good chance to all the other schools mentioned in your list...

By Africaccc (Africaccc) on Saturday, September 20, 2003 - 11:55 am: Edit

Do some research before paying top $ in the UK. Reputation not enough!
I for one am NOT applying to do Political Science or the Social Sciences in Cambridge after reading what the QAA says. This is the UK government's own quality watchdog for unversities - hardly biased!

Several colleges got top marks... but not Cambridge because of bad management and bad coordination on the SPS Social and Political Sciences Courses course. Confirmed by Cambridge itself in its newspaper:
SPS Tripos about to "CRACK" http://www.varsity.cam.ac.uk/8025694E0073CFEB/Pages/2712000_Morechaosin.html
“SPSed off!”
And the QAA lists other Universities getting straight As (bottom of page, like Oxford, King's College London, Warwick, York, Nottingham. Anyone else got good recommendations, views????

This QAA report destroys my illusions. Just goes to show you, buyers beware! Reputations can change!
I read in my econ history that Technische Universität in Charlottenburg Berlin used to be considered the best University in the world (at the turn of the century). Not so any more!

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