Students are pushing and shoving their applications into Ivy League schools hoping beyond all hope they are accepted into the most prestigious places such as Harvard, Yale and Princeton. If you think it was hard getting into these schools, think again. Yes, they do have a higher standard for their admissions criteria, but it is doable by following some advice.
The first thing students must have before even considering the following tips is an outstanding GPA and high SAT scores. Duh! What are yours? Are they high enough to enter into the elite status that is required of Ivy League students? Find out what they are and if you are coming up on your senior year at high school get those grades up if you need them to be higher.
If you are in a two-year college looking to transfer to one of these elite institutions, keep your GPA high and you may even be in line for a scholarship. These schools are flowing over with endowments to sign up for if you meet the standards. Now let’s look at a few ways that you can increase your chances, besides grades, of getting into the Ivy League.
Hopefully you have had your eyes on an Ivy League school since you got to high school, because colleges count all of years when it comes to your grades and activities. They are not going to be looking at just your senior grades. High schoolers are told time and again when they hit the door, get involved, keep your grades up. At graduation, those students that listened are the ones that are standing up getting all of the accolades from all the dedication and hard work they put in for the last 4 years. Those are the students that are being called over and over again to stand up, making their parents proud.
Your community leaders such as your pastor, or your teachers know you more than anyone. Get them to write letters of recommendation. They will be so proud of your accomplishments and the fact that you are going to college; they will write glowing letters for you.
Pump Up Your Activities
This does not mean increase the amount of activities that you are involved in but make sure the ones that you choose have significant value and long term commitment. Such as the school editor for four years, or community service every summer. This shows the deciding interviewers your dedication to a project, and this is the type of quality they are looking for.
Face to Face Contact
Go to the college, and meet the faculty. Showing that you are interested enough to travel to the school before there is an acceptance letter will give the impression that you are enthusiastic about being there. Giving the faculty a chance to see your face gets them to know you and when it comes time for them to see your paper trail, you name will pop out. Do your homework about the school, ask specific questions about the state of the art theaters they just had put up, or the magnificent lab capabilities that you look forward to working with. Go by the admissions official’s office and sit with them and discuss how excited your parents were to know you had chosen their school, mention some alumni if you know any. The personal touch is always better than just and online presence.
No Messy Essays
When it comes time to write your essays, if you have to get professional help, do it. Admission essay writing is an important aspect that cannot be done quickly and without thought. Professionals are ready to help you with all of the details that you may not think that matter. They will have a list of pertinent information for you to submit to them, and they will then arrange your paper in an orderly professional manner that will have the admissions officers happy that you submitted.
Your grammar matters. Your timelines matter. Your activities matter. The essay questions have to be answered for what they want, not what you want to write, and the professionals know this.
Submit them to the service in ample time so that they will back to you in time for you to get them in to your selected schools before the deadlines. There are many students that are vying to get into these schools and if you are late with your submissions you will be overlooked.
This is another section that should be done early on. Look up the scholarships that may be available for the school you want to attend and follow directions. Don’t put this off till the last minute. There is endowment money available for those qualified but that pot can empty fast from year to year. First come, first served, and make sure you submit on time. Deadlines are there for a reason. You show how much you want the scholarship. If there are extenuating circumstances, make sure the scholarship committee knows right away.
Checking on Your Application
Whatever you do, do not bug the admissions office over and over again. They have your application and you will hear from them whether you get accepted or not. The proper time to call or email to see if they are considering you is one-to one and a half months before school starts. If they have not sent you anything by then call or email them.
Keep in mind that you should be submitting to more than one school. The acceptance rate for Ivy League schools is very low. Forbes.com reports that “34,295 students applied to Harvard for the Class of 2018, and only 2,023 (5.9%) gained admission”
The majority of these and other tips can be accomplished once you develop self-discipline. If you want something bad enough you will put on blinders like a race-horse and head for the finish-line without any distractions. Those that get into Ivy League schools have that trait, self-discipline.
They know that in order to be the best they have to do their best. You can easily get accepted to the schools close to home, or maybe go to a tech-school instead, but you are choosing to be a part of an elite class of academia that will make your career soar if you stick to it.
College, whether it is an Ivy League school or not, is a challenging path to take for anyone. Because you have chosen to do this, it is your responsibility to keep the focus on the outcome.
We can make plans, but we cannot plan the outcome. Keeping your eyes on the outcome, and that is graduation some day from graduate school, and possibly a Ph.D., will be the best tip in this list, because if you are determined and focused you will not fail. Good luck!