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    #162334 - 07/16/13 04:39 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    Cricket2 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/11/09
    Posts: 2172
    Loc: Colorado
    I wish that our school gave some credit for pre-AP/honors/dual enrollment courses. Thus far, dd has taken and gottens As in every pre-AP class available save for one that she chose to not take at the pre-AP level b/c she didn't like the subject that well and because she already had two other pre-APs plus multiple science classes that year (she did get an A in the regular class, though). The pre-APs easily have double the work of the regular level class and cover a lot more material, but there is no GPA bonus for taking them.

    She has her first dual enrollment class next year along with some APs. The APs will give that +.02 bonus, but the dual enrollment, like pre-AP, has no GPA bonus either. She is, none the less, probably going to take physics as a dual enrollment her senior year rather than as AP because she'd have to take two science classes again next year to get the pre-AP physics in first before getting to AP. Her school really is not willing to flex on that for anyone.
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    #162339 - 07/16/13 05:48 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    intparent Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/16/09
    Posts: 553
    Quote:
    Right-- and the system as it stands is poised to mostly reward kids like mine (or those who can be made to LOOK that way, anyway)--

    who can pack more than seems humanly possible into a day-- every day.


    No..I don't believe this is true (again, go read that Cal Newport book recommended near the top of the thread). I think the admissions officers are aching for kids that are not just crammed so full of activities that they don't have time to breathe. There is a minimum they are looking for in GPA and test scores. But beyond that -- I think they want kids who are not "flat Stanleys". They want texture and evidence of true intellectual interest. My kid who got into Swarthmore, U of Chicago, Harvey Mudd, and Carleton last year had a 3.7 GPA (unweighted, her school does not weight or rank, and they can't take AP courses until senior year anyway). She had great test scores, but NO leadership. She was busy in high school, but a lot of the time was with activities that were not what everyone else was doing. And some things were outside of school (eg, entomology, took her collection to the State Fair through 4H).


    Edited by intparent (07/16/13 05:49 PM)

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    #162348 - 07/16/13 07:31 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    Cricket2 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/11/09
    Posts: 2172
    Loc: Colorado
    This does bring to mind a question for me: how does one ascertain if the culture of a school lends toward a HG+ kid with deep passions finding intellectual and emotional peers?

    We are just starting the college visiting tours with dd14 as she's going into her junior year in the fall. We are going to kill two birds with one stone so to speak later this summer by visiting family out of state and looking at a uni that is near those family members that has been in dd's top few for some time. While we're there, we are also going to try to look at another campus that someone recommended that is fairly close. Over spring break of her junior year, I plan to send her to visit my mom in another state and have my mom take her to look at another school that is in her top few list.

    She's hoping to get a feel for what these schools offer and whether she likes big or small, but everyone is going to tell us that they have a great fit for her socially I'm sure. How does one know if that is true? FWIW, she is not interested in Ivy League schools, just normal "good" schools like UW Seattle, Stetson in FL, etc. partially because these schools have an undergraduate major in her very specialized area of interest.
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    #162349 - 07/16/13 07:38 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: Cricket2]
    JonLaw Offline
    Member

    Registered: 07/29/11
    Posts: 2007
    Loc: The Sub-Tropics
    Originally Posted By: Cricket2
    This does bring to mind a question for me: how does one ascertain if the culture of a school lends toward a HG+ kid with deep passions finding intellectual and emotional peers?


    Step 1: Find where the school ranks on "Top Party School" on a scale of 1 to 10.

    Step 2: Find where the school ranks on per student athletic spending on a scale of 1 to 10.

    Step 3: Find a high quality list of academic reputation on a scale of 1 to 10.

    Create an optimization program on Excel that minimizes (1) and (2) and maximizes (3).


    Edited by JonLaw (07/16/13 07:39 PM)
    Edit Reason: I am tired.

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    #162350 - 07/16/13 07:42 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    intparent Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/16/09
    Posts: 553
    It is more art than science... we started our search with the Fiske Guide to Colleges and a pack of post-its to mark the schools that looked interesting. Then looked at SAT test score ranges. Then visited. It was easy to find reach (and expensive) schools that fit the bill. Much more challenging to find matches and safeties. We found you really have to set foot on campus to tell. And my D didn't really know for sure until going back for accepted student days (so 24 hours on campus) at her top choices. She ended up picking what was her 3rd choice going into those final visits.

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    #162351 - 07/16/13 08:02 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    intparent Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/16/09
    Posts: 553
    Ah, my D did mostly stay away from schools with Greek life and Division I athletics. But to be fair, you can find a significant number of HG kids at a college like University of Michigan. They just co-exist with the other types...

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    #162355 - 07/16/13 08:06 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: intparent]
    Cricket2 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/11/09
    Posts: 2172
    Loc: Colorado
    Originally Posted By: intparent
    Ah, my D did mostly stay away from schools with Greek life and Division I athletics.

    I would know how to search as to whether schools are Division I athletic schools, but are you also saying to avoid schools that have any Greek presence at all? Are there any universities with no sororities or fraternities? I'd agree that dd isn't interested in that being her social outlet and doesn't want a party school.
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    #162356 - 07/16/13 08:10 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    HowlerKarma Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/05/11
    Posts: 5181
    That's really good to hear, intparent. My DD also tends to gravitate to stuff that just interests her-- not what seems like it will 'sell' well. She's busy, all right (hey, it's the run-up to fair, and she's a 4-H kid with several project areas), but hardly frenetic, in spite of how it sounds. We don't do the over booking thing, and we're pretty confident that the EC's that she does as social activities like RPG-tabletop gaming aren't going to even be on the applications.

    What we've found to be true is that as much as we wish her age didn't matter-- it does. There is this underlying assumption that-- whatever she does-- we're somehow behind the scenes pulling her strings like a puppet. Bizarrely, she is judged WAY more harshly than typically aged peers, and her grade skips are counted as "lack of experience" in some ways, which boggles my mind. I mean, seriously-- how the heck is a kid who SKIPPED two grades since 5th grade supposed to have EC's for those years? She's done at least a third more than most of her peers every year, but the elapsed time is sometimes what matters anyway. "Oh, this kid has been doing this for six years." There's no real concept of how to handle the kind of compression that PG kids have to have academically. Scouting and 4-H have both proven problematic here, particularly whenever there is an "also" that specifies a lower limit on age. DD is a fair target shooter, but because she only JUST turned 14, she can't really do it through 4-H, because she'll get less than a year in the project.

    This is a big reason why a college like UW that has a lot of experience with young PG students gets a huge bonus score in our personal ranking system. They stand to understand that being radically accelerated 3-4 y comes with some strange baggage on the side.

    As I said earlier, we never really worried about all of this much because we figured that we were opting out and then-- well, then she started really considering what kind of intellectual peers she wanted/needed out of college. Then we took a hard look at just what kind of students are now the majority at even reasonably good public universities, and realized that she was going to be-- again-- at the 95th+ percentile or higher. Not good.

    At the start of their junior year is NOT a good time to suddenly decide that you aren't opting out after all, because it leaves you all scrambling to document things and schedule everything that has to happen.
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    #162359 - 07/16/13 08:21 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: 22B]
    intparent Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/16/09
    Posts: 553
    Just saying that if Greek life dominates on campus, then partying also probably dominates. One thing the Fiske Guide tells you is what % of the men & women on campus are in the Greek system. A high percentage is something we personally tried to stay away from. Some colleges have no greek presence (Carleton doesn't, I am thinking maybe Mount Holyoke didn't).

    However, my oldest D went to a LAC that does have sororities and fraternities. She did not have any trouble finding a group of like-minded friends (good students, very light partiers), and wasn't bothered by that aspect of the campus. But she is not my PG kid, either...

    You can't avoid partying altogether at colleges today unless you send your kid to BYU or a very religous school like Liberty. But as JonLaw said, you don't want one with a huge party reputation, either. You can read between the lines in Fiske and get a feeling. Also, College Confidential has a forum for pretty much every college -- you can go read past posts there and get a pretty good idea for a given school what the culture is like, I think.

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    #162363 - 07/16/13 08:59 PM Re: Ivy League Admissions. [Re: intparent]
    ElizabethN Offline
    Member

    Registered: 02/17/12
    Posts: 1390
    Loc: Seattle area
    Originally Posted By: intparent
    Just saying that if Greek life dominates on campus, then partying also probably dominates. One thing the Fiske Guide tells you is what % of the men & women on campus are in the Greek system. A high percentage is something we personally tried to stay away from. Some colleges have no greek presence (Carleton doesn't, I am thinking maybe Mount Holyoke didn't).

    On the other hand, 44% of the students at MIT are in the Greek system.

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