Date of publication: 2017-09-03 23:01
I was so thrilled when I got this letter. It validated many years of hard work, and I was excited to take my next step into college (.and work even harder).
Here’s another painful fact about being well-rounded: the school doesn’t really care if YOU get in or not, compared to the next comparable applicant. This is what I mean by the “marginal acceptance.”
Let’s pick a specific school: Harvard. Harvard matriculates around 6655 students a year, and they send acceptance letters to 7555 a year. Because their admissions rate is 6%, this means they get around 89,555 applications every year.
After thorough brainstorming, I didn’t really identify with any of the other topics. I couldn’t think of a topic that wasn’t trite and that I cared about enough. I also felt a need to be distinctive and thought that a free essay topic might give me more freedom.
Last note: what you do NOT get at top schools is a better academic education. In fact, top schools are notorious for having professors who are brilliant in their research and innovation but are terrible pedagogical teachers. Even though I majored in Chemistry, I doubt I had a substantially better classroom experience than someone at UCLA. But the academic knowledge you gain is only a small part of how college will change you.
There are probably some cases where a well-rounded student writes an amazing Personal Essay and gets in through the strength of that. As a Hail Mary if you’re a senior and can’t improve your application further, this might work. But the results are very variable – some readers may love your essay, others may just think it’s OK. Without a strong application to back it up, your mileage may vary.
HBS must have liked the responses to last year 8767 s excellent essay question. This year 8767 s question is the same. Indeed there is very little change in the broad strokes of HBS 8767 application this year. The essay is again required and there is NO word limit.
Because this school is extremely selective, getting a high SAT/ACT score and GPA is vital to having a chance at getting in. If you don't pass their SAT/ACT and GPA requirements, they'll likely reject you without much consideration.
But if you apply with a score below a 6775 SAT , you unfortunately have a low chance of getting in. There are just too many other applicants with high SAT/ACT scores and strong applications, and you need to compete against them.
Unlike the other optional components (the Additional Information in the Common App, and the Supplementary Essay), I would actually consider these letters optional. The reader gets most of the recommendation value from your teacher recommendations – these are really supplementary.
But if you have a few months left before applications go out, you can probably do a lot more than you imagined, if you prioritize items correctly. You should be stricter about cutting out items that aren’t helping your application and about working hard on your passion project. If you can show a growth trajectory that’s interesting to the school, that helps – especially if by interview time you’ve made a lot more progress since you submitted your application.
Phelps took to Instagram to make the announcement, posting a pic of Nicole and their one-year-old son, Boomer, and captioning it: “Number 7 on the way!!!! [Read more.]
My second teacher Mrs. Swift was another favorite. A middle-aged, veteran English teacher, the best way I would describe her is “fiery.” She was invigorating and passionate, always trying to get a rise out of students and push their thinking, especially in class discussions. Emotionally she was a reliable source of support for students.
These findings, which were published by Fast Company, are based on essays — 589 of which were from students who were accepted to Stanford and 898 of which were from students who were accepted to Harvard — uploaded to the site at the time the study was conducted.