Chances at these schools? Matches/safeties?

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Discus: What Are My Chances?: January 2004 Archive: Chances at these schools? Matches/safeties?
By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Monday, January 05, 2004 - 01:25 am: Edit

Hey, I've narrowed down my list of colleges a little, and was hoping for some help in assessing my chances for admission. I know that many of these are *big* reaches, but I can pay for the application fees and am very interested in the schools, so I don't see why not.

Stats (White, middle-class female attending Catholic school):

PSAT: Verbal: 70 Math: 69 Writing: 72

GPA: 3.9 – upward grade trend, should be at least 4.0 by graduation
Class of about 200, school doesn’t rank

9 – Honors English I
10 – Honors Spanish II, Honors English II
11 – AP US History, AP Psychology, AP Language and Composition, Algebra II/Trig-Honors
12 (anticipated) – AP Literature and Composition, AP Government, AP Economics, PreCal Honors, Chemistry II Honors (maybe).

Achievement awards in geometry (10), journalism (10), and health (9)
1st honor roll junior year (anticipated)
1st honor roll sophomore year
2nd honor roll freshman year

Select League ice hockey 8-11
Goalie; co-ed, one of only two girls in the league – selected to all-star team (10)
Work in the CAVE (computer repair) at school 9-11
Church nursery volunteer 9-11
Volunteer at elementary school 10-11
Newspaper – contributor, 10; Sports Editor, 11; and I will be assuming the Editor-In-Chief position my senior year
Member of Poetry Club 10-11
Member of Sci-Fi Club 10-11
Nominated for Dallas Youth Commission Board 11
Quill & Scroll 11
Attended Quest Leadership Camp at Sky Ranch – Summer 9, 10

I’m the editorial intern at the Dallas Observer – a large Dallas weekly newspaper, our only mainstream liberal paper. I write for the paper and have work published weekly (with byline), as well as doing extensive research and transcription work for my boss. It’s an unpaid job, excepting freelance fees, which I’ve been doing since June and expect to continue through my senior year.

Schools I’m considering (I am not applying to all of these, I’m still narrowing it down):

Washington University in St. Louis
University of Pennsylvania
University of Chicago
Stanford University
Sarah Lawrence College
New York University
Harvard College
Hampshire College
Cornell University
Columbia University
Colorado College
Bard College
Brown University

Also, I am a good essay writer and should recieve excelent recs.

I know that many of these schools are reaches, but which would you consider to be matches/safeties? What do you think my chances are at these schools?

Thanks for all your help guys,
- Mary

By Tylerewell (Tylerewell) on Monday, January 05, 2004 - 02:37 am: Edit

i would say learn the i before e rule and have fun in high school. college will come when it does. you'll regret not having thought about normal highschool rot when you get accepted/deferred/rejected and realize that college is just one more thing. one more lousy email/piece of mail/phone call that becomes a piece of who you are, not the heart of your existence. live and laugh it up in high school. college will come soon enough.

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Monday, January 05, 2004 - 03:42 pm: Edit

My school's guidance counselors ask that we have a pretty narrow list by the beginning of next month, so I'm just trying to get a jump on that. Plus, I'm excited about college and am eager to get started on the process, and this is one way that I can do that.

- Mary

By Midwesterner (Midwesterner) on Tuesday, January 06, 2004 - 12:36 am: Edit

You might want to consider some of the top colleges that have women's hockey teams - Yale, Princeton, Amherst, Williams, Boston College and Holy Cross are some of them. I know another top female player, and she is being recruited by half a dozen schools.

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Tuesday, January 06, 2004 - 01:32 am: Edit

Thanks for the advice, but I'm not really a top player, not good enough to get recruited anyway. I do play competatively, but only at Select B.

- Mary

By Collegeparent (Collegeparent) on Tuesday, January 06, 2004 - 11:07 am: Edit

Add to Midwesterner's list Dartmouth and Colgate. With your stats, they'd be interested.

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Tuesday, January 06, 2004 - 06:12 pm: Edit

Thanks, Collegeparent!

Anyone else?

- Mary

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Wednesday, January 07, 2004 - 10:58 am: Edit


By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Thursday, January 08, 2004 - 10:05 pm: Edit


By Xibanez (Xibanez) on Thursday, January 08, 2004 - 10:28 pm: Edit

what does HYPSM stand for?

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Thursday, January 08, 2004 - 10:41 pm: Edit

Something about the Ivies and uber-selective schools, isn't it? HarvardYalePrincetonStanfordMIT?

- Mary

By Vsage3 (Vsage3) on Friday, January 09, 2004 - 12:43 am: Edit

:(. your math hurts you.

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Friday, January 09, 2004 - 12:50 am: Edit

I am planning to major in English, but I know I should bring my math up. I've already brought it up from a 59 - and I think that, with practice, I can break 700 on the SAT, maybe higher. I haven't done any test prep (i.e. classes, practice tests), and I probably will if my March SAT isn't what I want it to be.

- Mary

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Friday, January 09, 2004 - 01:37 am: Edit

Just realized that I forgot to say this in my Stats/ECs above, but I will also graduate with 150+ community service hours, mostly from working with kids (just tutoring, crafts, and the like) in a urban elementary school here in Dallas.

- Mary

By Rogerevans (Rogerevans) on Friday, January 09, 2004 - 05:56 am: Edit

Marestar, if you can get your SAT's both over 700, or reasonably over 1400 total, you have a chance at every school on your list. Harvard and Stanford are reaches, but Columbia, Brown and even Cornell are good possibilities and I would rate your chances as almost assured at getting into one of them. Given the quality gap between those and the rest of your list--not that they are bad schools, just not as good--I think you only need to apply to one of the others. (Of course, you may have a preference for one of these others which would lead you to choose it as your safety.) Presuming you go to Ursuline, your college counselor can best guide you, but you are the type of well-rounded student all these schools look for. (To disclose my bias, I went to Harvard, Columbia and Cornell.)

By Cooldude (Cooldude) on Friday, January 09, 2004 - 07:42 am: Edit

could u guys evaluate my chances.
International : Asian (Living in the Gulf)

SAT I: 800 M
760 V

SAT II: 800 (Math IIC, Phy, Chem)
760 (Writing)

Class Rank : 2/70
recived a special award from the ruler of the contry for academic achievements.

EC's :
Good Drummer (many shows and competitions)
Table tennis (Played at the national level)
Debate (won many inter school competitions)
Math's Quiz (Stood first among 40 schools in the Gulf)
Placed in the top 1% in the Math's, Phy & Chem Gulf Olympiads
Internship during summer caterpillar (Construction Company in China (I am not Chinese)
visited the Bagram Air Base in Afganistan

am the Head boy of my school

have a job (7hrs./week)

some community service (1hr/week)

taken all the possible courses,
Calculas, Organic, Mechanics (High level)

Could u guys evaluate my chances at any of these Schools:

will be Applyiong for Fin Aid

•CALTECH (not need blind for Intl)
•STANFORD (not need blind for Intl)

Safety / Match
•IIT (Illinois)
•John Hopkins University

Also could u all suggest some good safeties


By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 12:27 am: Edit

Hey Rogerevans, thanks for your comments, and I do go to Ursuline - nice call! Your post is very reassuring, and I really hope you're thoughts are correct. The other schools, except for NYU and Hampshire, I'm not particularly attached to - they are really just products of the typical "I'm not going to get in anywhere!" paranoia.

- Mary

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 09:30 pm: Edit


By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 04:09 am: Edit

Another thing I forgot to mention, I found out the other day that I'm in the top 10%-15% in my class of about 200 (very competative school). Hopfully I can bring it up this year and next.

- Mary

By Largegreenturt (Largegreenturt) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 04:33 am: Edit


If you are into journalism, look into Northwestern. Medill is tops in the nation. Seems like your list is "lets go to US News and World Report and choose the best ones", not really thinking about a match for you. I can list off the top 10 schools in the country, along with some backups as well. What does cornell have in common with brown or UChicago etc? If you are into journalism, northwestern is the best place to be.

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 03:33 pm: Edit

Actually, I don't want to major in journalism because I feel like it's too narrow. What I really want is a quality English program. And I have actually spent a very long time researching my list, making sure that I have something in common with the student body, that I like the location, that teachers and students communicate well, ect. And Cornell doesn't have a lot in common with Brown or UChicago, but there are aspects about it that I am interested in that the other two do not have. Same with all the other schools, they all have their own strengths and weaknesses. I didn't just "go to US News and World Report and choose the best ones."

Thanks for your input.
- Mary

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 02:33 am: Edit


By Kazaraxa (Kazaraxa) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 02:48 am: Edit

I'd say don't really bother both with the ivies except perhaps Cornell. Unless you greatly improve your SAT scores and class rank, it seems unlikely. I understand the need to know, but if you're short on application money, I'd suggest cutting some of those far reaches.

By Eadad (Eadad) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 03:36 am: Edit


my son is a senior at st.mark's and daughter is a soph at ursuline.

having just gone through the process of applications,narrowing a list and having visited many of the schools on your list (wash u,u chicago, penn,brown and many others) i might be able to send some additional insight your way and would be more than happy to do so.

i am sure that my son would be happy to give you his insight about the process as well. he was accepted ea at yale.....

let me/us know

take care

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 02:48 pm: Edit

Another note for my profile (I really forgot a lot!) I should end up with about a 4.3 for this semester, not cumulative, but for the semester. I expect to continue this trend into the next semester and into senior year. So, again, my class rank and gpa will be going up and I should be in the top 10% by graduation. Also, I may be nominated for NCTE by my English teacher.

Kazaraxa, I haven't taken the SATs yet, nor have I taken any prep courses. As I've said before, I'm going to take the SAT in March and then if I don't get the score I want(1450-1500, I have 1390 equiv. now) I will take a prep course to bump it up. I have confidence in my abilities and feel that, if I work hard enough, I can get my SATs to where they need to be to be competative.

Eadad, congratulations to your son! Getting into Yale EA is really awesome. Any information you can share I would be most grateful to have. What's your daughter's name? I'm a junior at UA, maybe I know her.

Thanks for your comments guys,
- Mary

By Rogerevans (Rogerevans) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 03:53 pm: Edit

Mary, 92% of those in Cornell's Arts and Sciences school (where you would be) were in top 10% and around two-thirds had over a 1400 on the SAT (although the others were close--almost no one below a 650 on either math or verbal and you can be fairly confident these were athletes, URM's, perhaps some legacies). This is somewhat higher than stats at Penn (where the business school, Wharton, pulls up the stats), and significantly higher than Brown's profile. People sometimes lump in Cornell's other schools--Agriculture and Life Sciences, Human Ecology, Industrial and Labor RElations, Architecture and Hotel, for example--when giving stats and derive a distorted picture of the actual profile of the individual school in which someone is interested. Make sure you look at A & S when evaluating your statistical chances. Newspaper editorship will be helpful, and participation in sports is a plus.

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 09:56 pm: Edit

Rogerevans, thanks again for your comments, they have been very helpful and you seem to really know what you're talking about. You mentioned class rank - as many people have - and while I know mine is a little low (top 15%) I hope to break into that top 10% next year (perhaps even this year if things go well).

Also, I browsed the cornell website for some stats relating specifically to A&S and couldn't find any. Where did you get your school-specific information?

Again, I appreciate the time you've taken in responding to my post.

- Mary

By Eadad (Eadad) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 02:24 am: Edit


My daughter transferred to UA this year as a sophmore...(she had been at that coed school on Spring Valley since she was 4)so you probably don't know her.

I found your name in the Observer and will have her try to meet you...although it may be after finals.....

I'll be happy to pass on anything you might want or need to help your process.

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 02:14 pm: Edit

That's cool that you came across my name, hope you liked whatever you read. :) And I wish your daughter good luck with her finals, they're rough on all of us!

Also, when I've formulated some more specific questions about college, I will be sure to get in touch with you.

- Mary

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 09:32 pm: Edit


By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 02:24 am: Edit

Again vith zi bumping.

By Marestar20 (Marestar20) on Thursday, January 22, 2004 - 11:48 pm: Edit

Been awhile so... bump.

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