How many schools did you apply to?

Click here to go to the NEW College Discussion Forum

Discus: What Are My Chances?: January 2004 Archive: How many schools did you apply to?
By Foreignboy (Foreignboy) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 01:04 pm: Edit

Just curious.

I did 8.

By Bmurry (Bmurry) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 01:13 pm: Edit

Mass UC app - 5
Seperate apps - 4

So either 9 or 5

By Girlinbraids (Girlinbraids) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 01:25 pm: Edit


By Deeny1414 (Deeny1414) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 02:04 pm: Edit


By Penguin (Penguin) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 02:10 pm: Edit


By Isaman (Isaman) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 02:18 pm: Edit


LMU (Loyola Marrymount University)
-Berkeley, LA, Irvine, Riverside, San Diego, Davis

By Vulcano (Vulcano) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 03:01 pm: Edit

9 until two days ago. Decided to apply to Arizona State yesterday.

By Welshie (Welshie) on Saturday, January 10, 2004 - 03:03 pm: Edit

4. Amherst, Notre Dame, Washington and Lee, and BYU.


By Joe3000t3 (Joe3000t3) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 04:51 pm: Edit

12, yes it was hell

By Freak4korn72 (Freak4korn72) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 04:56 pm: Edit

3 :)

Purdue - Applied in August, Accepted late September
University of Dayton - Applied in October, Accepted November
Cornell - Applied late November til late December. Accepted April 1st? Hopefully

By Tsukinoai (Tsukinoai) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 05:01 pm: Edit


By Usnewsranker (Usnewsranker) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 05:45 pm: Edit

18 (chosen from US News Ranking)...i regret that i left out UT Austin...

By Benjamin (Benjamin) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 06:39 pm: Edit, thank God, I was accepted (Vanderbilt)

By Neo (Neo) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 07:15 pm: Edit


By Fiza (Fiza) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 07:31 pm: Edit

14 or 15.

I lost count after a while.

By Newyorkcity2012 (Newyorkcity2012) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 07:59 pm: Edit's alot. i applied to every ivy except princeton

By Debaterocks (Debaterocks) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 10:51 pm: Edit

i applied to 5 and had 6 more ready in case i did not get into northwestern ED...but did so i did not have to send in the other 6...thank god

By Evil_Robot (Evil_Robot) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 10:53 pm: Edit


By Peterline (Peterline) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 10:55 pm: Edit


By Vsage3 (Vsage3) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 11:35 pm: Edit

3: UF, GaTech and MIT. accepted to the first two (so far).

By Xdtish (Xdtish) on Sunday, January 11, 2004 - 11:55 pm: Edit

12, two from SUNY as safety. So technically 10.

By Danoeire (Danoeire) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 12:50 am: Edit

Evil Robot- where did you apply?

Also, anyone with around a 1300-1350~ where did YOU apply?


By Balkanman21 (Balkanman21) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 12:51 am: Edit


By Bern700 (Bern700) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 01:02 am: Edit

1, lol, I got into Penn ED but if I wouldn't have gotten in then I had another 8 schools that I would have applied to (Harvard, Yale, Dartmouth, GT, BC, BU, WUSTL, ASU Hnrs)

By Cheerios128 (Cheerios128) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 01:25 am: Edit

um 1500 so that's around 1300-1500
Applied to 6. Gtown, JHU, Tufts, GWU, BU

By Evil_Robot (Evil_Robot) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 02:13 am: Edit

"Evil Robot- where did you apply?"

I didn't have a 1300-1350, but I applied to:
Yale EA (accepted)
Harvey Mudd
UCI (accepted, ELC)
Carnegie Mellon

By Acennace (Acennace) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 05:50 am: Edit

9 (6 US, 3 overseas)

UNC Chapel Hill
UWisc - Madison
Illinois Wesleyan
Truman State

1 in Canada: McGill
1 in S'pore: National U. of S'pore
1 in HK: HKU

By Foreignboy (Foreignboy) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 08:53 am: Edit

Accenace, where are you from?
Interesting choice of schools.

By Financelad (Financelad) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 09:16 am: Edit

3 accepted to all 3

By Justinfiddler (Justinfiddler) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 09:19 am: Edit

chicago -accepted ea

now cornell,carnegie,wustl

By Stef86 (Stef86) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 11:54 am: Edit

I had a 1340 and applied to 11 schools:
Wash Univ in St. Louis
UNC Chapel Hill
UTexas Austin
USC Columbia (accepted)

By Mushnik (Mushnik) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 02:06 pm: Edit


By Hitu (Hitu) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 03:11 pm: Edit

Cooper Union
Univ. Of South Florida (Accepted)

By Penn08please (Penn08please) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 05:50 pm: Edit

13, I'm in fifth place!!!

By Thinisin (Thinisin) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 05:52 pm: Edit


By Peterkitts (Peterkitts) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 06:50 pm: Edit


By Cornellhopeful (Cornellhopeful) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 07:56 pm: Edit


Penn State(accepted)
SUNY Binghamton
Johns Hopkins

By Vsage3 (Vsage3) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 08:04 pm: Edit

wtheck? I guess I'm a slacker only applying to 3 (and only considering 3). You guys with tons of apps are nuts

By Musefinity (Musefinity) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 08:32 pm: Edit

UNC-Chapel Hill
Maryland-College Park
Truman State

By Mela (Mela) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 08:42 pm: Edit


USC, for the Thornton School of Music. If I don't get in I'll take a year off and see how destitute and emaciated I can get as a working musician. Then I'll apply for the 2005-2006 school year. LOL.

Please look at my post entitled "Will USC accept me?" under the topic entitled "What are my chances?"--I'd really appreciate it!

By Neo (Neo) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 08:50 pm: Edit


3/3 so far, and the other 2 come in April.

By Chen (Chen) on Monday, January 12, 2004 - 08:56 pm: Edit

8. ED II WUSTL. Cornell, NYU, Johns Hopkins, Vanderbilt, U of Roch, CWRU, UCONN.

By Acennace (Acennace) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 07:21 am: Edit

I have lived in HK for 4 years. My nationality is Indonesian n my ethnicity is Chinese...
I'm applying to many schools in different countries coz I'm worried about the visa. HK is my safety.

By Upandover (Upandover) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 09:14 am: Edit

Foreignboy, what schools did you apply to?

By Aenema (Aenema) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 10:24 am: Edit

i have a friend who is applying to 22 colleges!

By Foreignboy (Foreignboy) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 10:30 am: Edit


By Ishan (Ishan) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 10:59 am: Edit

(intl,finaid reqd)

By Upandover (Upandover) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 06:42 pm: Edit

(intl too, finaid required)
mt holyoke

By Slayer (Slayer) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 07:03 pm: Edit

mount holyoke
north carolina state university

By Usnewsranker (Usnewsranker) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 08:19 pm: Edit

to elaborate (18):
Washington in St. Louis
Johns Hopkins
Carnegie Mellon
Stony Brook
St Johns
City College
CUNY Guaranteed Med

By Stalingrad (Stalingrad) on Tuesday, January 13, 2004 - 10:22 pm: Edit

I applied to one, ITT Tech! And I got in!!!

By Collegeguy (Collegeguy) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 12:18 am: Edit


Stanford (accepted ea)


By Gpeso (Gpeso) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 12:23 am: Edit

18 way to much to list....

By Synapse (Synapse) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 12:41 am: Edit


By Voigtrob (Voigtrob) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 12:48 am: Edit

20... but that's an overestimate because it includes 6 british schools (I applied to Oxford but you can just plop down 6 names on the app so I put down 5 others, haha, already got into two of them plus Oxford), so it's more like 15.

Oxford (accepted), Princeton (deferred ED), Univ of Maryland College Park, Stanford, Amherst, Yale, Harvard, Swarthmore, Vassar, Williams, Chicago, Cornell, Carleton, Haverford, Kenyon.

I haven't visited any except Princeton and Oxford, and therein lies the reason for so many. I'd prefer to have options than only get in one place, go visit, and hate it. ;P

By Upandover (Upandover) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 02:21 am: Edit

Actually, mine's sixteen if you included uk schools.
voigtrob, you got accepted to oxford? wow, that's great. congrats!
I was pooled at Cam, and deferred at Princeton.

By Hardcoreskier16 (Hardcoreskier16) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 02:25 am: Edit

19 schools: (1470 SAT)
Georgetown School of Foreign Service (deferred EA)
Boston College (accepted EA)
William and Mary
George Washington
Claremont McKenna
Wash U St. Louis
UC Berkeley
UC Davis

By Piquant77 (Piquant77) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 04:22 am: Edit

And I thought I had a lot.
Yale (deferred EA)
Georgetown SFS
Johns Hopkins

1550+/760 II avg/42 IB diploma

By Linedeacon (Linedeacon) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 03:52 pm: Edit

Penn State Smeal (accepted)
Pitt Business (accepted)
Elon (accepted)
Notre Dame (rejected)
UMich (Pending)
Wake Forest (Pending)

By Voigtrob (Voigtrob) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 04:06 pm: Edit

Upandover: Thanks, it's really cool. ;D Good luck with Cambridge - and even if you get rejected don't sweat it... I think Oxford/Cambridge have probably the highest ratio of randomness to selectivity of any school in the world. ;P

By Nealp (Nealp) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 05:32 pm: Edit

28, so hah! haha, for real, 28 (or 27) lost count actuallly.

By Shortii22 (Shortii22) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 05:39 pm: Edit

Cooper Union
Carnegie Mellon
Johns Hopkins
Rose-Hulman (accepted)
Penn State (accepted)
Boston University
Rochester Institute of Technology
SUNY Stonybrook
SUNY Binghamton
SUNY U at Buffalo

By Compsciguy (Compsciguy) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 05:43 pm: Edit

Carnegie Mellon ED (1st Choice; Rejected)
UIUC (2nd Choice; Accepted)

By Soozievt (Soozievt) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 05:50 pm: Edit

I am a parent. My daughter applied to 8 schools. She was given a full ride at our state university as well but we do not really count that school as she had not intended to apply there otherwise.

I am really amazed at any of the students who have applied to more than ten schools. I particularly am shocked at the ones that said 28, 16, and 19! I think this is a lack of direction/focus as to finding schools that match what you want. Come April, when you have just a few weeks to decide where to attend, you will be at the point that many were at this past September narrowing their list down to make an appropriate match/choice.

I am further surprised at a few people who have no safety schools no matter how good their stats are. Even for top students, the most selective/elite colleges are an uncertainty/reach with very difficult odds. Even the very very best students can get rejected at such schools. Piquant, I am concerned about your list cause you have NO safety schools. I have a daughter also deferred EA to Yale who has solid credentials. She does have safety schools, however. Her safety schools are not easy schools and would not be safety schools for some kids but are surely easier than the top schools on her list or on your list. I think this is essential.

Hardcoreskier...I assume you are into skiing, duh. My daughter is also an avid skier and has been an alpine racer her entire life and so continuing to ski race is important in her college selection. I realize you may not race but if you are hardcore, are you giving skiing up entirely? I wonder cause you are applying to Washington U in St. Louis, a great school, but my daughter would not consider it cause of skiing. Just piqued my interest there when I saw your list and screenname.

Good luck to all you guys and may you all have some choices come April!

By Soozievt (Soozievt) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 05:56 pm: Edit

I forgot to say another quandry concerning applying to a dozen or more schools like some that you could not possibly have done all the specific apps for each school...must have done common. I think it is important to put your all into each application and gear it to that specific school. Each school has various essay prompts. Many schools have a "Why X college" essay. Ideally you should visit each campus and meet with various people such as professors. Also have interviews. If you do a very thorough job on the application, it should be quite specific to that school, include a cover letter, refer to various contacts made and so on. I do not see how it is possible to put the requisite energy and specificity into each application when you are doing 18 apps. I know the amount of hours my child put into each application and the many different essays written, and cover letters, and visits and email contact, and appointments with professors/coaches, etc. It was all she could do to do this for 8 schools.

By Usna_Reject (Usna_Reject) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 06:12 pm: Edit

U.S. Naval Academy
University of Illnois Urbana-Champaign
Lewis University

By Mical (Mical) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 06:31 pm: Edit

MIT (deferred)
Caltech (accepted)
Stanford (RD)
UT-Austin (accepted)

I'm so glad I didn't have that many essays to do.

By Harpersbazaar (Harpersbazaar) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 07:04 pm: Edit

1... Columbia University

By L3lahs (L3lahs) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 08:22 pm: Edit


By Debaterocks (Debaterocks) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 08:34 pm: Edit

besides northwestern ED i got into chicago EA, u mich, and marquette. I applied to ND rd but withdrew already...i am jsut thankful my "quest" is done and i am going to a good school...all you people who r in at your top school know what i am talking about...invigorating, isnt it?
i feel free for the first time in the moment i am not pursing admitance to is weird b/c that is what i have doing for the last 4 years of my life...but there is always law school...=(

By Sunshine916 (Sunshine916) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 09:21 pm: Edit

wow some of you guys are crazy.

i applied to 10 and thought i was going overboard i have 3 safeties, 4 high reaches, and 3 match-reaches. even at that, my guidance counselor looked at me funny.

i agree with Soozievt. i know that i spent hours and hours and hours on each essay and each short answer, cover letters, resume, etc. even then, i ended up having to submit the common app instead of the Williams App (they're essentially the same, but the Williams one had a specific essay i didnt have time to write).

how in the world did you guys do it?

wow well good luck. may good things happen in April :)

By Mels (Mels) on Wednesday, January 14, 2004 - 09:26 pm: Edit


By Hardcoreskier16 (Hardcoreskier16) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 02:39 am: Edit

Susan - thanks for the advice but I find it troubling that you are making assumptions about me based on the list of colleges I am applying to. I have thoroughly researched the colleges on my list and have visited all but 2, and suffice to say I would be happy at ANY of the colleges on my list. I also happened to start working on apps during the summer so I was able to fill out every school's OWN application and not the common app. I was extremely offended that you said I had a lack of direction/focus - I am extremely interested in political science and international relations - hence the majority of schools on my list - if you look you will see most of my schools are known for their government/international relations. After reading Jaques Steinberg's The Gatekeepers, I realized that college admissions was a crapshoot - therefore one of my essays might click with an admissions officer at one school, while another admissions officer may loathe it. As you commented - I also do not have many safeties on my list and the reason is twofold. Due to the fact that admissions is a crapshoot, I decided to apply to many selective schools that I would want to go to over only a few reach schools and more safeties. The fact that I was accepted at BC also made it easier not to apply to as many safeties. If you would like to discuss the motivation behind my PERSONAL choices about colleges and what works for me, I would be happy to do so. Maybe next time it will be in a less offensive manner.
P.S. Academics, not skiing, is my #1 priority

By Upandover (Upandover) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 03:25 am: Edit

I applied to 10 because.. I'm international and needs financial aid. As we all know, that's probably the worst combination ever.

UK schools don't count. With the exception of Cambridge(reach)and Imperial (match), the four others are basically... safeties. ^^ I got accepted already, but hopefully I won't go there.

By Musefinity (Musefinity) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 03:49 am: Edit

This is probably really stupid, but if you check off "yes, I'm applying for financial aid" then it makes it a lot harder to get in? Crap, I didn't know that. Oh well, I still haven't sent in apps.

By Nycneedhelp (Nycneedhelp) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 08:02 am: Edit

10...for Computer Engineering/Science

Stanford EA (Rejected)
Carnegie Mellon
U. of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (Accepted)
Penn State University Park (Accepted)
Rose-Hulman Inst. of Tech (Accepted)
Cooper Union

By Jersey220 (Jersey220) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 09:32 am: Edit

UMD-College Park(EA)
UNC-Chapel Hill(EA)
Carnegie Mellon(RD)

Stats: 1360(750m,610v), 96.2weighted, 25/339 in class, good ec's and reccs, ok essays.
I liked the way I applied. Everything was spread out with Deadlines. 2 were due Nov 1, 1 due Dec 1, 2 due Jan1, and 3 rolling sprinkled in.

By Jnatkins (Jnatkins) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 09:47 am: Edit

Rutgers (Accepted Rolling)
Brown (Accepted ED)

By Soozievt (Soozievt) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 12:10 pm: Edit

Hardcoreskier, I am truly sorry if you took my post personally. I actually was not directing my comments to you specifically. The only instance I mentioned you was in regard to a curiousity about if you hope to ski when in college cause I saw Washington U on your list. I actually have no feelings/opinions on that aspect whatsoever. It just got my attention cause you are a skier and so is my daughter (though she is a racer) and that I thought Washington U was well suited to her but she knocked it out cause of the location (not in the east like she wants and no ski racing). Like you, she is putting academics FIRST in her college selections but also has skiing as a secondary criteria. Wherever she attends, she will already not be skiing six/seven days per week as she does now but that is ok, she just does not want to give up this sport entirely. But in no way does that apply to you, just piqued my interest, that is all.

The rest of my post was not about you specifically. My comments were about applying to such a large number of colleges in general, though I recognize every case is different. In fact, in YOUR case, it sounds like you have researched schools very well, visiting and so forth and have geared your app to each specific school. I further admire that your attitude is that you could be happy at any school on your list. My D feels the same and I am grateful for that since admissions at very selective schools is such a crapshoot these days. I am impressed you started on your apps last summer and that explains how you fit in doing so many. I still would be hesitant to apply to so many schools but I understand that you have a strategy in place that works for you and glad to hear it.

As far as safety schools, I was NOT commenting about YOUR list. I was commenting in a general sense but then specifically to Piquant's list which I see as having NO safeties. I agree in your case that you are in at BC (congrats!) and so safeties are now a moot point.

I am sorry you took my comments personally cause I barely was considering your post when I posted. I only mentioned you in regard to being curious about being a skier and all.

Thanks for your feedback and be assured that I am not judging you. I hope you get into some of your top choices and clearly you will end up with some choices I am sure!

By Wo4567 (Wo4567) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 01:09 pm: Edit

9 - premed/music ed/history dont really know yet

boston university
william and mary
california institute of technology

By Mike (Mike) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 01:21 pm: Edit


By Constellation35 (Constellation35) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 01:23 pm: Edit

University of Georgia
University of Florida
University of Miami
Florida State University
University of Michigan
Purdue University-West Lafayette
University of Oregon
University of Portland
University of Washington
University of San Diego
Indiana University-Bloomington

By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 03:36 pm: Edit

Soozie, it is no longer unusual to apply to many colleges. My son applied to 17. He sent in a batch of ten by mid Oct which included some EA and rolling admissions school. As he got the early responses, he applied to 7 more schools, mainly because he was specifically recruited by them in the 8 weeks between his first batch of apps and school break. He had 5 reach schools, including 3 ivies, 7 match schools and 5 safeties. All schools were chosen for good reason. A lot to do with his sport and financial opportunities. He ended up at an "upper match" school with $20000 in merit aid and was really happy about his choice. Although we were willing and able to pay full amount for him, it would have potentially closed off options for our other kids so the bottom line did figure in the decision making process.
My neighbor's daughter applied to 28 schools (give or take 2). I lived in NY at that time and though the 28 was an extreme, it was not unusual for kids to apply to 10-15 schools if they were weighing financial aid and certain opportunities.
In this area 8-10 is usual among the prep school kids, but a young man on my son's football team applied to 18 colleges. He is an URM and will need a full ride and all of his colleges were picked with that in mind along with a few long shots that he maybe could get in. My son's advisor feels that he should apply to more than the 10-15 schools because of the iffy nature of the audition process. Two of the kids who went through this process have applied to more than 15 colleges this year. The trick is to start the process early with prior year applications and the prior year common app and get a batch out by mid October. Most of the kids I work with do this. Then you pick up the "stragglers" later. At my "workshop" many kids applied to several schools online after they had appled to their core schools. Many refused to look at safeties or their families have not realistically faced the financial realities of a private college tuition in the initial college choices. They needed financial as well as admission safeties but this did not sink in until they got certain schools and criteria out of the way emotionally. This catharsis occurs with the first batch of apps. My son will have the prior year apps of a bunch of schools done this summer and he has already picked the teachers he wants to write recs for him--at his school you pick junior year and they have the recs written over the summer. Also several essays are assigned over the summer and the kids can go over them with their counselors and English teachers who are around during the summer offering essay writing workshops which my son will not be using since he wants to be involved in theatre fully and is hoping for an internship in NY Philly or Boston. He will visit the schools he likes that are out of state during spring break, and spend the summer looking at nearby schools. A few schools he already has investigated and visited just because we happened to be in the cities. I lived in Pittsburgh for many years and still go there on occaision and he has visited CMU when we made the trek. I went to a funeral a couple of months ago, and we stayed at friends, S stayed at a friend at CMU. So he knows that school well. My brother lives in NYC so he has taken advantage of our trips there to look at some school such as Fordham and NYU. He always takes the time to visit the theater department and introduce himself to the profs there including the dept heads. He has at this point always known someone studying there who brings him in and does the intros and takes him to class.
I don't believe there is an absolute number or limit of colleges to apply to. It is as many as the student can handle. 3 may be too many for one student whereas the young lady with her 28 college who is super organized had little trouble juggling her choices and she ended up in a school that she would not have applied to had she pared her list down to 10.
I have said tongue in cheek that I think kids should apply to all the ivies and select school, then once getting that out of their systems start looking at colleges more realistically, hopefully finding the hidden gems that pertain directly to them. Too many kids spend far too much time on a school which is a lottery ticket and frankly it does not mean you have a better chance of getting in. Most kids I know who have gotten into these schools have 1 distinguishing factor that catches the schools' eyes, and as long as their app is complete and there are no red flags and they are within certain statistical posts, they are in. General excellence is not a distinguishing factor, and schools like Harvard do not track your visits or contacts. The dirty secret is they do not even view half the tapes and cds they are sent. They are looking to eliminate the vast number of applicants and are looking for a few things they want which they do not advertise. Athletics is just one visible distinguishing factor since the NCAA sports are out there for all to see. When my niece was looking at schools, we got the inside word on several schools who were looking for serious French majors. Not kids who were good at French or speak it, but who were commited to the study of the subject and specified it as a major. Yeah, they can change majors at any time, but they wanted to rope a bunch of freshman commited to the subject to keep the departement going. An application indicating that major that showed serious interest and activity in the language was looked upon with great interest. Kids ask all the time if choice of major would give them an advantange and the true answer is that it could in given situations but few people know what that major is at which school and there has to be a strong sign of interest and activity in that subject. I see so many talented musicians, violinists, pianists--most premed or engineering. There is not much of a chance they will be enrichening the school with their playing with that course of study. Now if they were going in as music majors, auditioning and meeting with the music faculty showing their seriousnesss, that is a different story. The ones who are seriously interested in studying music at Harvard should have contacted a teacher in the department, visited, watched the classes, talked to that teacher, and then his tape would be flagged and someone would listen to it. This is the major exception to the general not tracking the contacts at Harvard. An athlete too had better be in close contact with the coach if he wants his name high on the wishlist that goes to admissions. Otherwise, the apps are true lottery tickets, and what does it matter how many of such apps you send IF YOU CAN HANDLE THEM.
I was a bit surprised at how many of the students represented on this forum were working on their apps over the Christmas breaks. ALL of the kids I work with were long done with their core schools by then. They got all of their notifications as to what was missing in their files, awknowlegements and interview contacts in November. December was just another quick sweep and look around for any schools they might have missed, some regrets, some safeties, some what the hecks, some scholarship opportuinites. With the common app on a computer file, a bunch of essays to pick from and no pressure, they could leisurely pick and choose some schools they missed during the frenzy when things were too heavily affected by peer and social pressures. Also the financial implications are beginning to sink in as well as some feeling about where you are as the EAs come rolling in. Most of my kids applied to a few EA schools as well as an ED school. We do not like the single choice EAs.

By Ccs_2004 (Ccs_2004) on Thursday, January 15, 2004 - 10:14 pm: Edit

3, Santa Clara (already got in), Claremont McKenna, and UBC in Vancouver. Most of my friends did under 10, the average being around 5, however I had a friend apply to 19, and one only applying to 2.

By Upandover (Upandover) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 06:44 am: Edit

Jamimom, I liked your post. =)

By Piquant77 (Piquant77) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 10:08 am: Edit

Like hardcoreskiier, I'm going to have to defend my college list Susan (especially since your remarks _were_ specifically addressed). 11 schools is not too different from 8 in terms of work, and I too started the selection process over the summer. I visited EACH AND EVERY one of my schools save the last (Tufts), which I was not as informed of this summer during my college tour period but then decided to apply to upon the advice of many informed people (including those at CC, and a professor who is a family friend). I too am looking for schools to fit my major (political science & int'l relations, among other interests) as well as ones that are great across the board. However, since college admissions IS so random, and a good number of my schools are ones that have insanely low admissions rates, I had to up the # of apps.

I might add that I am also two years younger than most seniors, and my parents have advised me to take a year off and do some work here (I live in a foreign country), perfect my second language, etc. if I do not get into a college I would love to go to (i.e. any one on that list). They especially didn't want me to waste even _more_ time and effort on "safety" apps when I have so many other options as an int'l student (a lot of my classmates are applying to Canada, Australia, England, and my current country of residence). So, I am taking my time, fully aware that U.S. college admissions is a crapshoot and not the beginning or end of my life.

I do know that it is by no means easy to get into the schools I mentioned, so please don't take me for a silly, uninformed child who is going to be shocked and at a loss if I have nowhere to go come April. With that said, you are undoubtedly a well-informed and helpful parent, and I appreciate the concern.

By Morgantruce (Morgantruce) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 10:17 am: Edit

In another thread I saw a student claiming to have applied to 31 schools.

Sooner or later, colleges are going to reject out of hand any student who applies to more than ten colleges. I wouldn't blame them one bit. I suspect a lot of colleges already do this!

I would compare the situation to a business that doesn't mind getting a few targeted emails every day. They actually look at those emails and consider buying something as a result. But when the same business suddenly receives thousands of emails every day---that's called SPAM!

Do you like SPAM? Neither do colleges. When you send a huge number of applications to a huge number of schools, you are "spamming" them. They have every right to think that you are not very serious about wanting to attend their college. They think that you really do not know what you want.

Anyone who sends out a huge number of applications has clearly not done their homework: the number of schools that are a good match for you is NOT a huge number. You are just making a list of schools you think you might like to attend---probably because you recognize their names. Admission committees are not stupid---they can easily spot an application that was sent out like spam---and they will not like it.

Do your homework. Find the best matches for your personality, talents, and ambition. Pick a pair of really solid safeties---schools that would accept you gladly and certainly. Pick a few schools in which you would match the average (non athlete/legacy) student. Pick one or two reaches. Pick ALL of them very carefully---make sure that all of those colleges would look at your application and think that you were a good match.

Since your list is somewhat targeted, you now have the time to make a real campaign to get into each of them. Make contacts with various people on campus, write letters, ask questions---show interest.

Keep in mind that the object is NOT to get into the best school. Everyone knows what the "best" schools are and EVERYONE is applying to those few schools. The object is to get into the school that is the best for YOU. That is something very different! If you can show a college that you have done your homework and can make them see that you have carefully matched yourself to their school, you will be accepted.

By Soozievt (Soozievt) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 11:01 am: Edit

Piquant, thanks for your thoughtful explanation. In YOUR case, I was not remarking about number of schools. Eleven is a little high but not outrageously high given being an international and the selectivity of those schools. My only thought on YOUR list was the lack of safeties. You have explained your reasoning now and I understand that since you are applying at a young age, you may not come to the US unless you can get into one of these selective schools and would not come next year for a school such as might be a safety for you. I hope that I got that correct. I mean everyone has unique situations. I have a younger daughter, 15, who wants to graduate one year early and so every circumstance differs. Being international surely differs.

My general sense still is that more than ten schools is not necessary in terms of finding schools that match what you want. A few need to be reaches, some matches, some safeties. That is my view. I also believe that the student needs to put a LOT of energy into not only each application specifically for each school but also the visits and contacts. That is simply harder to do with more than ten schools. I don't know about you guys but in my house, since I have a student who excels academically, it means hours of work each night for homework, plus on weekends and for any student like her who is heavily involved in ECs, it means every afternoon, evening and weekend as well. Fitting in the 8 applications, plus visits, contacts, interviews, and DOING THEM VERY WELL, writing numerous essays, cover letters, resume, etc....was very difficult to fit into her life. I cannot imagine doing it for 15 schools, let alone doing it well UNLESS you do not have much homework or do not do hours of EC per day. Maybe it is possible, but I cannot see it here. In any case, as I mentioned before, come April, in a very short span of time you may be weighing 9 acceptances (sounds nice in a way) but have to make some decisions among them and narrow it down, something I would think might be better to do earlier on. These are just my views and not really directed toward anyone's list. I simply am shocked to read of the many kids applying to more than a dozen schools. And the expense no less!

By Soozievt (Soozievt) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 11:04 am: Edit

Piquant, please be aware that my second paragraph above is not directed at you whatsoever, but just a general view I have. Hope that was not confusing.

By Wo4567 (Wo4567) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 01:22 pm: Edit

most people cannot afford to apply to 17 schools. therefore it IS unusual. at approximately $55 an application, that comes to almost a thousand dollars. 28 schools is ridiculous. At that point you are just taking spots away from other people and wanting to tell people you got into 20 schools. It becomes less about giving yourself options and more about wanting to make yourself look better. DO NOT think that you have to apply to this many. However if your parents are rich and you are pretentious then knock yourself out.

By Ella05 (Ella05) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 07:35 pm: Edit

Gee, my school has never sent anyone to an ivy league. my counselor almost fainted when I told him my plans. (sigh) guidance would have been nice.

By Usna_Reject (Usna_Reject) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 08:06 pm: Edit

"most people cannot afford to apply to 17 schools. therefore it IS unusual. at approximately $55 an application, that comes to almost a thousand dollars. 28 schools is ridiculous. At that point you are just taking spots away from other people and wanting to tell people you got into 20 schools. It becomes less about giving yourself options and more about wanting to make yourself look better. DO NOT think that you have to apply to this many. However if your parents are rich and you are pretentious then knock yourself out."

I pratically had to BEG my mom to help me apply for just ONE college. So imagine my 2nd time. Now I'm thinking about just one more and she's freaking out. It's not just the college applications, I have take and retake tests and have to pay for them too. She will not take me to campus tours and I know she will not give me a penny when it comes to tuition. My brother had to drop out of UIC because of this. It sickens me how spoiled some kids are.

By Wdlynn (Wdlynn) on Friday, January 16, 2004 - 08:32 pm: Edit


William & Mary
Washington & Lee
Wake Forest
James Madison

By Piquant77 (Piquant77) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 01:51 am: Edit

Yup, you got it right Susan :) I'm not like most internationals in the sense that I am from the states, but it is true that my parents would like me to take a year to gain some "real world" experience, upon the situation of not getting into a school that's great for me. It's mostly their concern about my age. Though I honestly doubt anyone here expects all rejections come April, I do realize that it's a possibility.

You make a good point about the time spent on applications; perhaps I wasn't as "thorough" as I could have been, but I also am one of the only ones currently and in the history of my school to undergo the process, and I think I've done my best. All I know is that I started early, eliminated quite a few schools early on from my list (based on research and yes, even more visiting), spent a lot of time on essays (revising, etc.) and met all the deadlines with time to spare.

Where else did your D apply Susan (out of curiosity :) )

By Uuaww (Uuaww) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 02:45 am: Edit

well, unlike the rest of you, im way too poor to go out of state, in state is going to be a struggle for me, anyways, heres where i applied

Chico St.- accepted
Cal Poly SLO
UC San Diego
UC Davis

5 schools

By Jadesark (Jadesark) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 01:07 pm: Edit

I think it seems like I applied to a lot of schools, but it's just so I have alot of options (financially), and so that I have A reach, matches and safeties. Also, my counselor reccomended 3 extra schools for me to apply to that she thought would be a good fit. I get application fee waivers, so I don't pay much.

NYU- #1 choice
Penn State
U Pittsburgh
Arcadia U
Drexel U
Temple U

(schools my counselor suggested)
Franklin and Marshall

By Jamimom (Jamimom) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 04:20 pm: Edit

Morgantruce, I do not agree with your post. Applications are not spam. Colleges send out the applications as invitations to apply and for the most part they are accompanied by a check. Also, considering the costs of visting the college and preparing for college--all those years of ECs that involve money, and the ultimate cost of college really makes the cost of applying quite small. I remember more than 30 years ago, I believe the cost of application was $25 for a particular school that now charges $50. The tuition did not go up proportionately, I guarantee you. Many online apps are free. The colleges want this "spam".
There is no number that is too many. Anyone care to come up with the limit? True, some schools may get upset if someone has applied to so many schools, but frankly there are some fine schools that are upset if you put any school before them and will penalize you accordingly.
I agree that kids should not indiscriminately apply to schools just to "collect scalps" and unfortunately I have seen some of this. I discourage it, but when it comes down to it, it is up to the kid. There is no law against it and as far as I am concerned it does not permanently keep someone else out of the spot; schools adjust for this and that is why there are all of these waitlists. But for most kids and families, they are just scared and confused. They start the process with one state of mind, end it with another and have changed it many times during all of those months. So many times I have seen parents indulgently encourage their kids to apply wherever they want. When the time approaches to make the choice, and the financial aid and scholarship offers are sparse, the tune changes. It is ever so nice to have a batch of safeties to choose, and if it is that important to someone to have a name school that they want to increase the odds of getting in by applying to a lot of them, it is certainly up to that person to apply to whatever number of schools he can handle. There is no legal limit. As far as I am concerned if a program comes up where you can apply to all 3000 schools, that would be fine.
I have often said that all kids should apply to the top schools to get it out of their system and so that someone who is intimidated or just not in the loop does not get overlooked. I really think the ivies and some of the other schools should set up something to invite EVERYBODY to apply. Then they'll have plenty of those rare gems in the backwaters that they claim they want but do not spend the time and money to excavate--they sure as heck aren't going to find them at Scarsdale High or Prep where they spend most of their time and efforts.
My son applied to 17 colleges. Some were not as expensive as other with application fees but I believe the total cost of fees was in the mid hundred dollar range since some apps were free online. He ended up with $80,000 in merit aid and at the LAST college he applied to. He had sent an incomplete inquiry/aborted app to this school (a highly selective school) and the adcom called thinking his records got lost and cajoled him to apply KNOWING he had already applied to 16 other schools. His teachers were quite annoyed having to dredge up the recs again and made some comment to him but they did what they were supposed to. They did not want to do this the 18th time, when still another school called about application status that he did not complete and since he knew he would not go there he did not follow up--that school is a well known NY school once all female, and I believe they would have taken him. Again he told the adcom there that he had applied to 17 schools at that time and they still welcomed the app. So who is to put the limit on the apps, the highschools (some do), the family (some do), the colleges (none do), Morgantruce, (yes, you do)? The problem with applying to all of these schools is that it is difficult to give full attention to them and if the student is applying to a selective batch, alot of attention is often necessary. In that instance, the student is just handicapping himself by spreading himself out too thin thereby giving those students who carefully handpick and nurture their applications an advantage as they well have earned. With all of the time and agony spent on these selective school apps, why would anyone want to apply to that many schools unless there is an overriding reason to do so. You short yourself on time you should be spending on school and activities that would distinguish yourself from the pack, you have more to track and most kids have to be pushed to the finish line of the app process anyways. Why would anyone care if someone wants to torture himself an do this 30 times over? Anyone who wants to do the same is welcome to do so.
Now the wisdom of doing this, as Soozie as brought up is a whole different issue and those of you who are getting defensive about her comments should know that that is a real problem when applying to too many schools, defined as more than you can handle well. Anyone who has read about the work and time her D has done in the process in the school where she has applied should compare the efforts he is putting into the application and ask if was truly worth the time applying to that many schools. In some cases, my son's, for instance, I believe it was worth it--but I will tell you he dropped the ball on some situations in the process. It was a chance he took and the fact that there a real risk should be clear to anyone who is applying to tons of schools.
Post too long already, but I must also add that some highschool counselors do not like all of these schools and if the school calls him for any reason there is a possibility that he will let them know that you are applying to so danged many schools that he does not know how serious you are about any of them. Also if you are applying for financial aid, all of your schools will show up and each college has access to that info and, yes, they may not like it and act accordingly.

By Soozievt (Soozievt) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 06:24 pm: Edit answer your question, my daugther applied to Yale, Princeton, Brown, UPenn, Tufts, Smith, Connecticut College, Lehigh. She also was offered a full four year scholarship to our state university though had not been interested in going there so that is sorta an "extra" cause of the offer as it was not on her list.

By Emperoriv (Emperoriv) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 06:54 pm: Edit

4, all reaches, i dont plan on going to college, lol (MIT, P'ton, Harvard, Cornell)

By Emperoriv (Emperoriv) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 06:54 pm: Edit

100th post!!!!! :P

By Jennyzsong (Jennyzsong) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 07:49 pm: Edit

i did 12 applications and applied to 12 schools. 3 schools with a single application, and then two schools that each needed 2 seperate applications because I applied for two programs.

Basically I applied for 14 separate programs

Northwestern -- Journalism
Columbia -- Psychology
Stanford -- Communications
UPenn -- Communications
Cornell -- Communications
Berkeley -- Communications
UCLA -- English
UCSB -- Psychology
McGill -- General Arts
U of Toronto Scarborough-- Journalism
U of Toronto -- Psychology
U of Guelph-Humber -- Media Studies
Carleton -- Poli Sci
Carleton -- Journalism


By Upandover (Upandover) on Saturday, January 17, 2004 - 11:17 pm: Edit

And colleges SPAM us as well. Those viewbooks and mails... 'mass-marketing' tactics.

Report an offensive message on this page    E-mail this page to a friend
Posting is currently disabled in this topic. Contact your discussion moderator for more information.

Administrator's Control Panel -- Board Moderators Only
Administer Page