Hopefully my last chances post...

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Discus: What Are My Chances?: November 2003 Archive: Hopefully my last chances post...
By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Friday, October 24, 2003 - 06:51 pm: Edit

I'm just another southern californian who wants to go to a UC, but is hoping for something a bit better.


730 US hist/730 Math IC/720 writing/690 Math IIC (I'll retake math IIC, and possibly writing in december....and maybe add another one like physics or world hist)

AP scores:
5 US hist
5 Euro hist
5 eng lit
4 eng lang
4 psych
4 us gov
4 comp gov
3 physics B

ranked 16 out of 600 with a 3.75 unweighted GPA (a 4.2 UC GPA)

2 years on Varsity tennis

1st place chapman university essay contest
A "Spirit of the Diablo" Award for tennis (leadership)
3 "Principal's Excellence Awards" (Best students in each subject)--2 for hist, 1 for english
AP Scholar with Distinction

president of interact club
founder and president of jewish cultural club
secretary of student author society
Under Secretary General of MVHS MUN conference (the biggest on the west coast)
minor involvement in a few other clubs
I also play the guitar in a band and practice 3-4 hours a week but I don't know if I should put that on the app...any advice?

speak fluent russian, came here as a refugee from the soviet union in 1990 but have since earned citizenship

have had two jobs and some limited community service projects (about 100 hours total for community service)

senior year courses:
AP calc
AP span 4
"humanities" (International Baccaulareate program)
AP bio
Int Relations IB (MUN)

I'll probably recieve the full IB diploma and have gotten two 5s on the two tests of taken

Stanford EA--my essay's really good and i should have nice recs...i give myself a 30% chance at the school
Brown/UPenn/Cornell (I'll apply to one of these)

UC Berkeley
UCSD (more of a safety but you never know)

UCI (already accepted because of ELC)
USC (probably wont apply)

if there are any other schools I should apply to, or schools I should take off don't hesitate to tell me. I am open to all suggestions....including LACs.

I'm applying as a Russian Lang and Lit major to all the schools except JHU (because they don't offer it) because its the only major I'm sure of. I plan on dual majoring in either psych, biopsych, neuroscience, or biology but I'm not sure which one yet.

I'm pretty well rounded and I do have a niche that I could easily fill since I want to do Russian Studies.

Thanks for your opinions ahead of time.....and please be as brutally honest as possible.

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Friday, October 24, 2003 - 07:54 pm: Edit

is my post really that boring?

By Becks777 (Becks777) on Friday, October 24, 2003 - 09:25 pm: Edit

what kind of suggestions r u lookin for?....u have a well sorted out list....great matches and descent safeties......and looks like u probably want to stay in cal....and there n other good schools except for caltech maybe

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 10:18 am: Edit

Is the Russian studies thing an actual hook? In terms of my application how much could it help?

By Anya (Anya) on Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 03:26 pm: Edit

Wow. Yeah I'd think Russian studies would be as much a hook as anything, are you bringing that across in your essay or somewhere on your application? (of course you are...) I'd think you have a great chance everywhere, although I know Stanford's crazy to predict for anyone. Good luck! Maybe I'll see you somewhere someday, if I end up by some stroke of luck at Pomona.

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Saturday, October 25, 2003 - 10:31 pm: Edit

Yeah, my essay for stanford is pretty good, at least my friends and teachers tell me so.

I'll post it after the November 1 deadline because I don't want to get it stolen.

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Sunday, October 26, 2003 - 10:49 am: Edit


By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Sunday, October 26, 2003 - 03:27 pm: Edit

Someone please just give me a run down of how I'm looking at the schools and which other schools I should consider.

By Sethriddley (Sethriddley) on Sunday, October 26, 2003 - 08:42 pm: Edit

I really don't know anything about Stanford, but I would guess that you'll get in 2 out of 3 of Brown/UPenn/Cornell. Probably best chance at Cornell b/c of the large student body there. I'm not too familiar with the California schools, but I would say that of the schools listed, you will get into at least one of the reaches, and probably most of the others. Hope you like my non-expert advice as much as I liked yours! (yours seemed a bit more expert than mine by the way!)

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Sunday, October 26, 2003 - 10:51 pm: Edit

does anyone know if major matters for Stanford--do they consider it for admissions?

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 06:44 pm: Edit

i think it must be the post name that's drawing people away...

what should i make a new post under? because mine is the only thread on this site that isn't getting any feedback.

btw, thanks for the extremely optimistic info, i appreciate it...assuages my doubts

By Spicymeatball (Spicymeatball) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 11:13 pm: Edit

Make your next post "Eskimo seeking last chance at freedom" and then just say its a metaphor in your post.

Anyways I think you have great shot at all the schools you are applying too. Of course the private and ivy schools are always tough (I knew an awesome valevictorian 1530 get rejected to all, and a stupid person get into Princeton somewhat on lacrosse). Anyways, alot of it is luck of the draw, and just having an edge. As for the band, I wouldn't just put it plainly, Im in a band, practice alot, but if you could pull it off as like a skill you have been working on, gotten better, taken lessons maybe, or any professional manner, than it would be great. Thanks for the help, and best of luck, I think you got a better shot at stanford than I do!

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Monday, October 27, 2003 - 11:24 pm: Edit

haha, that is a very catchy title (maybe kids will think there are eskimos in siberia?).

and thanks for the advice.

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Friday, October 31, 2003 - 04:50 pm: Edit


By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Saturday, November 01, 2003 - 10:50 am: Edit

come on....I eval all of your chances

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Sunday, November 02, 2003 - 12:44 pm: Edit

Ok, here's my stanford essay (the one i submitted for EA), I answered the simplify one ( i dont know of anyone else who did). Tell me if you guys think its good enough to outweigh some of my other stats:

Destiny grants us our wishes, but in its own way, in order to give us something beyond our wishes.

We came absorbed in our past lives, the precious pieces of our existence carted off in a few economy-size suitcases as we marched toward an uncertain future. Everything done to that point became meaningless. We began to build new lives—our own identities in a world full of strange faces. It was a lot harder then. Every day was spent searching for a sort of security that we couldn’t find, and every night was wasted wondering when we could stop looking. Our lives were full of far-off dreams that called out to us. Yet everything kept on moving, with us or without us, for better or for worse.

And life goes on. Thirteen years have past. We have achieved more than we imagined; a life lived with no regrets. In those thirteen years I have grown up in a world completely different than my parents’. I have not experienced their persecution, their long lines for bread, or their cramped houses. Nor have I seen the velvet Russian winters, soft-sparkling snow pouring out in a white haze, the smell of hot tea and prianiki on a winter afternoon. They are only stories of an old life, relics of a fading past. But I need to know them. I need to understand them beyond words. I have to feel the emotions, to engross myself in identity and search for meaning.

And I start to look. My eyes guide me through thirteen years of my life. They push through old scarves and leather gloves, through jewelry and coins, finally stopping when they see my past. I skim its cover. The soft felt lining shines against a backdrop of worn-out clothing. Its blue threads are embossed with a picture of the Odessa Opera House, under that the word "Album."

And I start to discover. Scrawled writing lines the inside cover, a note written by my grandmother’s friend explaining her gift. The Cyrillic is difficult to read, but my eyes catch the date: 1960. I turn the page. Two big brown eyes stare back at me. My grandmother’s smile stretches across her face; her round cheeks radiate a natural warmth that show her purity and compassion. She is only a story to me, her warm face another detail I will never know in person. I turn another page. My great grandfather plays with his young daughter. His eyes are gleaming with pride as a big smile reveals his white teeth. It was 1939. He died 2 years later, a victim of the holocaust. Another picture shows my grandfather standing in front of the “Heroes of Odessa” monument, another my father dressed up as a rabbit for New Year’s. Each photograph yields a journey, each face a mystery.

And I start to understand. The photo album shows me who I am; it tells me where I came from. The black and white photographs give me what words cannot. By the time I close the album I know the answer. Simplify. I am made of every photograph. Their stories are who I am, and who I will become. Their legacy is the only possession worth keeping; for once forgotten it will never come back.

We came here not to escape the memories, but to hold onto them; to fulfill a life that no one in our family has ever known—our destiny.

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 - 02:08 pm: Edit


By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Tuesday, November 11, 2003 - 02:38 pm: Edit

You have a nice array of colleges and are already accepted to your safety. You have as good of a chance as anyone in getting accepted to your reach schools. Don't know much about the school you are attending--it must be tough since you are not in the top 10% with your stellar stats on the APs. Let's do a quick eval: 1) Curriculum--5 definitely with all those APs and IBs 2) Grades--4, maybe even a 3, depends on your school> You are not even in the top 20% of your class but if you are in a really tough school and do not have any Cs or too many Bs, then the 4 would hold. 3) Test scores--4. 4)Recs--Hard to say. But generally kids who are not in the top of their class will not get recs that say "best student" I ever had or even "best in class"--those are key words schools like Stanford and other highly selective schools look for. I would guess a 3 unless there is something very unusual or special about you compared to your classesmates that does not show up in your grades. 5) Essay--3, maybe a 4. 6) ECs-3, but I don't know anything about MVH-MUN, maybe it is considered a big deal by colleges. That puts you just about on the border for the most highly selective schools, the way I look at it which is where most applicants land. Now if schools are interested in building their Russian departments, you would be a very appealing candidate. On the other hand there has been a huge influx of Russian speaking students in the last few years so there really is no shortage of them. Pre-med or science apirations appear totally unsupported by activities, awards or exams--I don't see any chem at all. Why would you be majoring in biology, neuroscience, etc unless you want to be a premed since there is little support in your resume of interest in those subjects?
Again this is just a scan of what you have here from someone who looks at about 150 kids' apps--close to 1500 apps each year for the last 15 years. I usually have more info and this is just a website, but I'm giving you my thoughts on what I see in this snapshot.

By Andrey1225 (Andrey1225) on Thursday, November 13, 2003 - 08:50 pm: Edit


I'm sorry I did not understand this comment on your post: "it must be tough since you are not in the top 10% with your stellar stats on the APs"

I'm ranked 16/600 which is top 3%.....(maybe you overlooked it and thought it was 60?)
It's also a very competitive school and one of the few to have multiple blue ribbons

But as for everything else, it's right in line with what I'm thinking.

thanks for your help

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