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09/04/2019

Could I get into a good college? Ivy League?

QUESTION
Could I get into a good college? Ivy League?
I’m a sophomore at a Catholic High School. I always try to put the maximum effort in anything I do. I try my best to be involved in both my school and community, and hope to start a community service project before my senior year. Someday I hope to be able to support my family so they won’t have to work as hard as they do, which serves as one of the reasons to be successful. My freshman year was rough on my GPA. Many family issues came up at once, which led to a lower GPA than I normally strive for. I ended the year with a 3.7 GPA unweighted. This year my GPA has risen drastically. I now have a 4.0 unweighted and plan on keeping it that way. I take the most rigorous classes available and plan on taking AP classes next year. I participate in many clubs at my school. I was recently accepted into National Honor Society. I serve in the Student Government. I am a member of the National Art Society. I am a Student Ambassador, whose purpose is to give tours of the school, take on shadow students interested on going the our school, and helping set up events to attract prospective students. I’m on Scholars Bowl Team at my Highschool. Lastly, I am a member of the Year Book Committee whose purpose is to take pictures at school events, call businesses for Ads, and help create and sell the school yearbook. I play JV/Varsity Basketball at my school. This Summer I plan on attending some leadership camps such as Governors Institute for Engineering, and Boys State. I do quite a bit of community service, and don’t plan on cutting back. I have work experience at my family restaurant, which serves as work experience.

Please tell me what you think! All answers welcome. Thanks! College suggestions would be great! 🙂

ANSWER
As Eri said, it is impossible for you to have a 4.0 GPA if you had a 3.7 at the end of last year. You may have a 4.0 as a weighted GPA now but your unweighted GPA can’t possible be a 4.0. Regardless, your stats are very impressive. If you continue with everything you do now through senior year, and ace your college application (essays, recs etc) then I’d say you’re a candidate for the Ivy League. However, the #1 thing you must realize is that no matter how great a student you are, you are not guaranteed admission to Harvard, Yale, Cornell or anywhere else. Ivy League schools are reach schools for everyone who applies because of their low acceptance rates. If you want to make yourself a better candidate, I suggest acing either the SAT or the ACT. Ideally, your scores would be above 2200 or 33 to really help your chances of acceptance. Either way it is going to be very tough for you to get into the Ivy League.

Now, you’re definitely going to need some match and safety colleges for your college application list. I don’t know where you are from or what your intended major is so it is very difficult to assess what schools would be good schools for you. For your safety schools, I recommend state universities or low-cost private universities. You always want to have safety schools on your list even if they’re not your favorite because you may just have to attend them. For match schools, I suggest looking into good, competitive schools that are not quite Ivy League caliber. I’m from the Northeast so schools like Northeastern, Boston College, MIT, NYU etc are examples of schools I would look at if I had your stats. However, once again it depends on your intended major and location.

Also, I want to ask why you want to go to the Ivy League. Yes, Ivy League schools do have fantastic reputations and prestige but for most fields, it will not give you a much better job outlook than you would receive at a state school or other private university. I don’t know your finances but unless your parents are very wealthy, do you really want them to be paying over 200,000 for your undergraduate education? What if you want to go to graduate school? Ivy league schools don’t give merit aid so you’d have to hope for good financial aid to bring the cost down. Of course all of this is irrelevant if you’re very rich but I would seriously consider looking at state schools or lower cost schools.

Good luck in your search for a college!