Quick profile, admission chances

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Discus: What Are My Chances?: August 2004 Archive: Quick profile, admission chances
By John123 (John123) on Friday, July 30, 2004 - 09:13 pm: Edit

1420 SAT (750M, 670V)
31 ACT (notable: 33 for mathematics subsection)
should be right around top 10% of class of 165
national merit finalist
nothing extraordinary extracurricular-wise:
4 years tennis, 2 years football, 4 years hockey, nhs member, sadd member.
~3.9 Unweighted GPA, taking hardest class courseload available
3.4 gpa freshman year
3.9 gpa sophomore year
4.0 gpa junior year
4.0 gpa expected senior year


1) Should I even look at the Ivy League? Would I want to, anyway?

2) Chances at Notre Dame, U Chicago, any Ivies, Northwestern, others you may think of comparable.

3) How will my national merit finalist award be looked upon?

4) Should I even fret over which school to go to? I plan on spending a good portion of the next decade in school. If I were to go to University of Michigan and do well there, what would my chances at a top grad school (MIT, Ivies, etc) look like?

5) How will my ever-improving GPA and poor freshman grades be looked at by universities?

Thanks :>

By Entropicgirl (Entropicgirl) on Saturday, July 31, 2004 - 12:08 am: Edit

1) Not unless you've got some pretty big EC thing (good enough to be recruited, leadership) that I'm not seeing...but then, going to the ivies is not necessary for success in life.

2) Not familiar with any of those, except that U Chicago is biiiiig into essays. Like I said...dunno 'bout the EC's, but these schools don't sound quite as scary as the ivies :)

3) I think it matters more and more as the selectivity of the school you're talking about decreases. How d'you know you'll be one, though?

4) U of Michigan is WAAAAAY good enough! Just make sure to do well, and you'll be competitive anywhere.

5) It's an upwards trend, so you're probably fine there. Lots of colleges realize that when you enter HS, you're 13-14, scared, overwhelmed, the whole nine yards. Since you got your act together, and quickly, it should work out.

By Alexandre (Alexandre) on Saturday, July 31, 2004 - 12:49 am: Edit

1)You should always look into the Ivy League.

2) Your chances at any school other than Stanford, Harvard, Caltech, Princeton, MIT and Yale are decent.

3) National Merit Finalist award cannot hurt. It certainly helps.

4) Michigan belongs with the schools you mention in question #2. And when you ask about top graduate schools, Michigan belongs there too. So don't worry about Michigan.

5) Your GPA has improved constantly and that will weigh in your favor. Some schools don't even look at Freshman year.

Do you have any majors in mind? What are your career aspirations?

By John123 (John123) on Saturday, July 31, 2004 - 03:41 am: Edit

I'm thinking about Biochemistry, because I have a relative that has a Phd in biochem. and does very well. I'm more of a science/math kind of guy, although I know I'd do well at other careers if I put my mind to it.

Ideally, I'd like to earn a Phd in my field, teach some and also do some outside work for companies, etc.

Entropicgirl: I don't know 100% yet. I know I'll be selected as a semi-finalist, based on past cut-offs for my state. I'm fairly certain I'll also become a finalist, because I have decent creds (90% of semi-finalists become finalists).

By Alexandre (Alexandre) on Saturday, July 31, 2004 - 04:34 am: Edit

Well then, here are the schools I would look at in order of excellence in Biochemistry and overall academic reputation:

#1 Johns Hopkins University (reach/match)
#1 Stanford University (super reach)

#3 Columbia University (reach)
#3 Cornell University (reach/match)
#3 Duke University (reach)
#3 University of Michigan-Ann Ann Arbor (match if you apply before October)

#7 Brown University (reach)
#7 University of Wisconsin-Madison (safety)
#7 Washington University (reach/match)

#10 University of Washington-Seattle (safety)

Then you have the LACs. Many are excellent in the sciences are should be taken very seriously...as serioulsy as any of the schools above:

Amherst (reach)
Carleton (reach/match)
Davidson (reach/match)
Grinnell (match)
Haverford (reach/match)
Middlebury (reach)
Oberlin (reach/match)
Pomona (reach)
Swarthmore (reach)

By John123 (John123) on Monday, August 02, 2004 - 02:20 pm: Edit

U of M is a definite because I live in the state of Michigan.

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