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The information you need to step ahead of the crowd. So You Want To Go To a Good or Ivy League University? Ms. Devon Stafford; University Counselor.

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Presentation on theme: "The information you need to step ahead of the crowd. So You Want To Go To a Good or Ivy League University? Ms. Devon Stafford; University Counselor."— Presentation transcript:

1 The information you need to step ahead of the crowd. So You Want To Go To a Good or Ivy League University? Ms. Devon Stafford; University Counselor

2 The future world Rankings What is the Ivy League? Highly selective admissions The Holistic review process How to stand out from other applicants Other considerations in admissions Six case studies How not to get in Advice Agenda

3 The Future World

4 How Does Ranking Work?  Categorized by their mission,  The Carnegie classification, used extensively by higher education researchers.Carnegie classification  organize their data and to determine colleges' eligibility for grant money. 2015-best-colleges-rankings?page=2 2015-best-colleges-rankings?page=2 Rankings

5 National UniversitiesNational Universities, National Universities offer a full range of undergraduate majors, plus master's and doctoral programs, and emphasize faculty research. National Liberal Arts CollegesNational Liberal Arts Colleges, National Liberal Arts Colleges focus almost exclusively on undergraduate education. They award at least 50 percent of their degrees in the arts and sciences. Regional Universities Regional Universities offer a broad scope of undergraduate degrees and some master's degree programs but few, if any, doctoral programs. Regional Colleges Regional Colleges focus on undergraduate education but grant fewer than 50 percent of their degrees in liberal arts disciplines; this category also includes schools that have small bachelor's degree programs but primarily grant two- year associate degrees. Regional Universities and Regional Colleges are further divided and ranked in four geographical groups: North, South, Midwest and West.

6 Undergraduate academic reputation (22.5 percent): Retention (22.5 percent): Faculty resources (20 percent): Student selectivity (12.5 percent): Financial resources (10 percent): Graduation rate performance (7.5 percent): Alumni giving rate (5 percent): The breakdown:

7 Brown University Columbia University Cornell University Dartmouth College Harvard University Princeton University University of Pennsylvania Yale University What is the Ivy League? Athletic league comprised of highly selective universities

8 Peer institutions listed by Harvard University: PrincetonStanfordYale Ivy Peers The Ivy League’s elite crew (institutions the Ivies listed as their peers, excluding other Ivies): Amherst Chicago Duke Georgetown Johns Hopkins MIT Northwestern Rice Stanford Rochester Wash UWilliams

9 1. Carleton College 2. Princeton University 3. Oberlin College 4. Stanford University 5. Yale University 6. Cornell University 7. Bowdoin College 8. Amherst College 9. Williams College 10. Swarthmore College 11. Middlebury College 12. University of Michigan, Ann Arbor 13. Pomona College 14. The University of Pennsylvania 15. Brown University 16. Harvard University 17. Wesleyan University 18. Columbia University 19. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 20. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 21. University of Wisconsin, Madison 22. Haverford College 23. Dartmouth College 24. Davidson College 25. Hamilton College 26. The University of Chicago 27. Grinnell College 28. Ohio State University 29. Kenyon College 30. University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) The Top Ranked colleges and universities by peer selection:

10 Grades & rigor of curriculum Less than 20% admittance rate Essays & standardized tests Unique, interesting, likable Extracurricular activities & leadership Letters of Recommendation Usually there is a Holistic reading Highly Selective Admissions

11 Vassar 8000 aps for 650 spaces admit rate of 20%1300 outside of us apps Vanderbilt : 30000 for 1600 spaces *4 different admission processes because they are in the colleges; 300 international 86000 apps for UCLA 5700 freshman 1600 are from outside of state one app for all the UC scores so superscore SAT just highest sitting score read apps twice and they are ranked Examples of Selective Schools:


13 Key point is that being a strong academic is most important Strong Grades of mostly 7’s in IB for sure Robust overall GPA (grade Point Average) over 3 -3.5 years of HS Strong SAT or ACT scores Possible AP’s Majority of apps fall into the border zone Usually this is not what gets you into top selective schools Academics is #1

14 SAT Scores ReadingMathWriting 25%75%25%75%25%75% Carnegie Mellon 630730680780640740 Duke 660750690780670770 Emory 640740670760650750 Georgetown 640750650750-- Johns Hopkins 630730670770650750 Northwestern 680750700780680770 Notre Dame 660750680770-- Rice 650750680780650760 Stanford 670770690780680780 University of Chicago 700790700780-- Vanderbilt 680770700780670760 Washington University 690760710780-- Comparisons to Look at:


16 It is a zero sum and only so many spaces Wanting a broad diverse demographic Students have to clear the academic hurdle fit: for the school and what they are offering fit for the student: (including retention) Strong Extracurricular Engagement Most institutions are need aware for International students Are characteristics portrayed well in the full application profile? Families want the formula but there is no formula What are they Looking for?

17 IN BUILDING THE FRESHMAN CLASS: a balance of interests, talents, backgrounds, experiences, perspectives and institutional priorities what does the applicant have that we want? rating system for each school these question frame the way they look at the student IN INDIVIDUALS: talent and motivation Engagement / Committment impact creativity leadership


19 Unis needs multiple sources of information to determine if the student has the ability and character to be considered goes beyond the academics, rigor and scores and place them in context Extra Curricular Activities- How engagement and meaningful was the experience and the longevity of the experience beyond CAS Teachers Recommendations Essay is so important Holistic Review

20 Write down three of your (or your child’s) best qualities on the sticky notes Either: Now Circle one that is unique Star one where you show leadership / initiative Share 3 BEST QUALITIES ACTIVITY

21 Common App Questions: Some students have a background or story that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what lessons did you learn? Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again? Describe a place or environment where you are perfectly content. What do you do or experience there, and why is it meaningful to you? Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family. SCHOOL QUESTIONS: NYU is global, urban, inspired, smart, connected, and bold. What can NYU offer you, and what can you offer NYU? (200-400 words) Essay is so important: If you have two minutes to explain yourself to a stranger, how would you do it? Essay:

22 Positive Behaviors and Attitudes shape the letters written Create a relationship with your teachers/ coaches Share what you are doing in your life Be a student teachers want to write a reference for Teacher Recommendations

23 So What Now?

24 Grades & standardized test scores – that is what they are looking for Geography –Atlanta, GA vs. Princeton, NJ Unique academic interests or undersubscribed majors, demonstrated interest Major Regional, state, or national competitions & awards Unique extracurricular activities Essays Strong Extended Essay in generated topics How to stand out from other applicants

25 Legacy & 1 st Generation Gender Ethnic diversity Internationalism Athletics recruitment Musical or artistic talent Other considerations in admissions

26 Ranked top 1% at a middle-tier public suburban HS AP Calculus BC 5, World History 5, US History 5, European History 5, Geography 5, Economics 5, Spanish 4, Chemistry 4, Government 4 SAT: MA 770, CR 790, WR 800; –SUBJECT TESTS: World History 750, European History 800, Math 800, Literature 740 Interested in government & politics Accepted at Stanford, Columbia, U Chicago, Duke, Rice, UNC Chapel Hill Rejected from Yale Case study 1 - Harvard University

27 4.00 GPA at an International School All A’s in his A-level courses, continuing a second year in A-levels in 5 academic subjects SAT: MA 760, CR 760, WR 770; SAT Subject Tests: Math 800, Physics 800 Interested in interdisciplinary studies between science, technology, history Accepted at Notre Dame, UC Berkeley Waitlisted at Penn Rejected from Harvard, Princeton, MIT, Stanford, Dartmouth Case Study 2 - Yale University

28 Do not visit colleges & demonstrate interest (interview) Do not treat others well in HS (recommendation letters) Do not come across as interesting or likable Do not take initiative Do not show academic focus Do not become a leader and show leadership potential How NOT to get in

29 Start a personal file with activities –Include the number of hours per week & weeks per year, positions held Get to know your school counselor & teachers Do not be afraid to try & drop activities and look at sustaining activities Start early in the process – 9 & 10 Work hard in classes & grades Write strong & interesting essays Take initiative & create a club or organization Prepare for interviews Demonstrate interest Study for & complete testing requirements early, meet deadlines Advice from the Pros at Accept U

30 Questions?


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