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MY stats and weaknesses:

Academics:
GPA: 3.99/4.0 (unweighted, all As, one A- in AP Bio)
SAT: 2260/2400 (800 math, 700 verbal, 760 writing) - 1500 SAT on old scale
Honors: Intel Corporation Scholarship (interned at Intel Corporation as an engineering
intern during high school), Washington State Scholar (four year, full tuition scholarship
anywhere in-state), Advanced Placement Scholar with Distinction (scored higher than 3
on at least 4 different AP exams)
Leadership Extra-curriculars
Junior Class President (organized homecoming dance and setup Thanksgiving dinner for
314 homeless people in community that was featured in local newspaper)
Founder and President of KEY Club (Community Service Club)
Other Leadership:
o Boys State Representative,
o HOBY Ambassador (10th grade - awesome experience),
o FBLA State Champion for public speaking,
o Founder & President of Chess Club,
o Economics for Leaders Conference (EFL awesome time)
Sports Extra-curriculars
Varsity Tennis (10th, 11th, 12th)
Varsity Swimming (10th, 11th)
JV Golf (10th)
Other Extra-curriculars
All-State Orchestra, First Violinist
Youth Symphony, Assistant Concertmaster
MathCamp for gifted high school students from Canada and the United States
USAMO: AHSME (scored over 100), AIME: 2
Engineering intern at Intel during high school
Hospital Emergency Room Volunteer
Eagle Scout
Recommenders:
COLLEGE PROFESSOR from MathCamp
AP European teacher
AP Math teacher
AP Bio teacher
Leadership Class teacher
Community Volunteer Mentor

REJECTED:
Harvard (I wasnt THE BEST at anything)
Princeton - my #1 choice, best undergrad education in the nation
Stanford (hurt like hell - S emphasizes ESSAYS AND PERSONALITY BIG-TIME, rich
white girl I know across street with two doctor parents and 3.8/1240 SAT (vs. my
3.99/1500 SAT) got into S - go figure)
WAITLISTED:
Yale (doesnt get many STEM kids) - seems to have happiest students out of HYP, but S
kids are the happiest
ACCEPTED:
MIT (MathCamp professor recommendation put me over top)
Johns Hopkins (biomedical engineering program - #1 premed program in country)
Columbia
Cornell (easiest Ivy to get into (poor mans Ivy) but beware of SERIOUS GRADE
DEFLATION)
UPenn (accepted into engineering, rejected by Wharton finance program though since I
had zero biz/finance work experience)
Swarthmore (partial merit scholarship - LOVES minorities including Asians)
Duke
Rice (HIGHLY UNDERRATED school, most kids who get in here are choosing between
Rice / Stanford / Harvard / MIT)
Amherst (LOVES minorities)
University of Washington (full-ride with Honors Program)
Bates College (weed-smoking rich kids - I just applied because they flew me out for free
and begged me - merit scholarship)
STRENGTHS:
None - just another BORING Asian robot applicant
Did everything well but NOTHING SPECTACULAR
WEAKNESSES
the jack of all trades, the MASTER of NONE o was not the best at ANYTHING,
o HYPS looks for WELL-ROUNDED student BODIES, NOT well-rounded
students - couple math geniuses, couple of future Nobel Prize winners, couple
award winning poets, couple of concert pianists, etc
Extra-curriculars had ZERO PASSION - done for PURPOSE of getting into college, and
IT SHOWED
Extra-curriculars lacked DEPTH of involvement - no national recognition
Lukewarm recommendations
Essays were NOT inventive or unique
Being another close to perfect but not memorable Asian applicant when there is a
strict 20% quota on Asian applicants in the Ivies

Breakdown of incoming class of 1600 at Harvard:


- 500 slots for special people: athletes, legacies, children of Obama and Bill Gates, children of
wealthy donors, celebrities, famous actors, Olympic gold medalists, members of royal family
- 1100 slots for normal people like you and me - MARKETING + PASSION!
KEY QUESTION: WHO do you want to be at the cocktail party in 2017 at HYPS?
- math genius
- future Nobel Prize winner in physics
- concert pianist who has soloed with Chicago Symphony
- USA TODAY ALL-AMERICAN HIGH SCHOOL ACADEMIC TEAM LOOK-UP ONLINE

COMPETITION - usa TODAY ALL-USA academic team:


http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/2007/gallery/n070517_HSallstars/flash.htm
John Zhou, 17, Detroit Country Day School
College: Harvard
GPA: 4.0
Accomplishments: Research on conductor-magnetic polymers named Intel Science Talent
Search finalist; Siemens Westinghouse semi-finalist (PASSION); research on translesion
synthesis proteins won $25,000 Davidson fellowship; USA Physics, Biology and Math
Olympiad semifinalist; All-State Honor Band and honor soloist, clarinet; student council
treasurer; Science Olympiad Club president; principal clarinetist, Metropolitan Youth
Symphony; 2,400 SAT (TICKET BIG DANCE 750+); Presidential Scholar; school newspaper
columnist; varsity track team; founded schools AIDS Walk team, which raised $7,200;
developed English and Chinese websites for organization helping AIDS orphans in China
(HOOK).
William Alden, 17, Harvard-Westlake School, North Hollywood, Calif.
College: Yale
GPA: 3.93
Accomplishments: Wrote four one-act plays, two of which won the California Young
Playwrights contest and were professionally produced at the Old Globe Theatre in San
Diego, and a third was produced at the Fringe Festival in Edinburgh, Scotland (PASSION);
first prize, Princeton University Ten-Minute Play contest; Glendale Piano Competition grand
prize; World Piano Pedagogy Conference master class performer; principal pianist and
percussion section leader, high school symphony orchestra; founder and editor, school literary
magazine; varsity fencer and qualifier for national age-group competitions (HOOK); four
national Scholastic Art & Writing Gold Awards.
Stephanie Brinton, 17, East High, Salt Lake City
College: Harvard
GPA: 4.0
Accomplishments: Los Angeles Liszt International Piano Competition winner who has
performed on the Young Concert Artists Series in Italy, she created Musical Portraits of
Famous Composers, a 50-minute program she presents to elementary schools (PASSION);
varsity basketball captain also lettered in cross country and track; took 10-day service trip to
Ecuador to help build a school; National Honor Society chapter president; Key Club treasurer;
Girls State; Utahs Junior Miss. (HOOK)

** SAMPLE CLIENT 4 YEAR PLAN: **

KEY QUESTION: WHO do you want to be at the cocktail party in 2017 at HYPS?

TATI 4 YEAR PLAN SUMMARY - no weaknesses + IT quality - black female science


geek with a hip twist - UNICORN - marketing game - maybe 5 students with profile below
each year IN NATION - write your own ticket to HYPS with full merit aid:
1.

PASSION that goes against grain: black female science geek vs. Asian male science gk
- Intel Science Talent Search Junior Year with
- lab research experience and mentor who is COLLEGE PROFESSOR @ Columbia
Univ. NYC and
- summer research internships at Stanford / Johns Hopkins +
- PUBLISHED RESEARCH PAPER IN JOURNAL)
- no premed angle - 50% of incoming class at HYPS is premed - BORING
- FOUNDER & President of Research Club / Symposium

2.

off-beat HOOK: ____________ (Slovakian dance team?)


- ESSAY: Dancing to the beat of Slovakian drums has been a pivotal part of my high
school career I am a risk taker Throughout my high school career, I have taken
risks that have defied stereotypical convention and strengthened my resolve Including
publishing research with my professor mentor at Columbia research is my passion

3.

SATs 750s across the board (750 verbal, 750 math, 750 writing) - NO EXCUSES TICKET TO THE BIG DANCE IS 750s - infinitely LEARNABLE test
- sophomore year - PSAT - national merit semifinalist/finalist - I WANT 700s across the
board (700 verbal, 700 math) by SOPHOMORE YEAR
- black applicant with 4.0 / 650 SATs (dime a dozen) vs. 3.8 / 750 SATs (unicorn)
- SAT IIs: 700s across board
- PASSION/marketing will get you into HYPS, but a low SAT will KEEP YOU OUT

4.

GPA: 3.9+ (AP tests quality over quantity)


- establish dominance in classroom FROM DAY ONE - top dog - best student in 10 yrs
- Junior year grades MOST IMPORTANT - ALL As
- challenge every non-A grade IMMEDIATELY
- avoid classes where you have a competitive disadvantage - eg, advanced Chinese
- get in good graces with teachers and identify recommenders EARLY
- AP exams: quality over quantity, take 2 exams and get 5s on both, rather than taking 4
exams and getting 4s on all 4 - no weaknesses

5.

Well-roundedness: class prez, founder of research club, sports-FENCING, shakespeare

6.

Recommendations: college PROFESSOR

** SAMPLE CLIENT 4 YEAR PLAN: **

4 YEAR PLAN SPECIFICS:


FRESHMAN YEAR

PASSION: apply to summer research programs for high school students


HOOK: start developing it
SAT: buy (1) Princeton Review SAT book + (2) 10 REAL SATs - one hour each day,
every day
GPA: #1 in EVERY class, dominate and establish rapport w/ teachers for
recommendations
Well-roundedness: run for class prez, sports, clubs, etc., apply for HOBY, become best
friends with the counseling center (scholarships, opportunities, etc.)

Summer: full SAT prep course in preparation for PSAT/NATIONAL MERIT FINALIST
SOPH YR - PRINCETON REVIEW - 700s across board, SUMMER RESEARCH fellowship,
PARLAY into research in NYC at Columbia during schoolyear
SOPHOMORE YEAR

PASSION: research during schoolyear with INTENT to compete in Intel Science Talent
Search Junior year, apply to summer research programs for high school students at
Stanford/Johns Hopkins, get recommendation letter
HOOK: should be developed and running
SAT: PSAT early Soph year, 700s across board to qualify for National Merit Scholar
Finalist, REDO 10 REAL SATs - one hour each day, every day
GPA: #1 in EVERY class, dominate and establish rapport w/ teachers for
recommendations, pick out AP exams to take Junior year
Well-roundedness: Founder of research club/symposium, run for class prez, sports,
clubs, etc., apply for Girls State

Summer: full SAT prep course REPEAT - PRINCETON REVIEW - 750s across board,
SUMMER RESEARCH AT STANFORD/JHU, look to PUBLISH + enter Intel Science talent
search, look into applying GATES MILLENIUM SCHOLARSHIP (full ride minorities)
JUNIOR YEAR

PASSION: research during schoolyear and COMPETE in Intel Science Talent Search
Junior year, PUBLISH RESEARCH, apply to summer research programs for high school
students at Stanford/Johns Hopkins, get recommendation letter
HOOK: should be developed and running
SAT: TAKE SATS - 750s across board
GPA: AP exams - quality over quantity
Well-roundedness: Founder of research club/symposium - put on symposium for
research + get LOCAL NEWSPAPER TO COVER, run for class prez, sports, clubs

Summer: SUMMER RESEARCH AT STANFORD/JHU, line up recommendations, write


ESSAYS and prepare APPS (be MEMORABLE), HIRE ADMISSIONS CONSULTANT,
RETAKE SAT IF NEED BE AND SAT IIS, visit colleges, Boys State
5

** SAMPLE CLIENT 4 YEAR PLAN: **


SENIOR YEAR - 1st semester

APPS: FULL-TIME to complete essays be EARLY ACTION deadlines DEC. 1,


interviews
PASSION: COMPETE in Intel Science Talent Search, PUBLISH RESEARCH, get
recommendation letter
HOOK: done
SAT: retake if necessary - 750s across board
GPA: ACE 1st semester, slack off 2nd semester
Well-roundedness: cut crap out - no time

COLLEGE APP TIERS - 4 TIERS - stretches, targets, safeties, super-safeties:


STRETCHES: 8 year combined BA/MD programs at Brown PLME, Northwestern, and
Rice/Baylor (kids who get into these programs TURN DOWN HYPS to go - no brainer)
TARGETS: HYPS
SAFETIES: Johns Hopkins (biomedical engineering #1 premed program country at best med
school in country - JHU most respected docs), MIT, Columbia, Brown, Dartmouth, UPenn, Duke
SUPER-SAFETIES: Cornell, Swarthmore, Amherst, Wash U. (merit $$), SUNY honors full
ride, Michigan full ride, Carnegie Mellon, U Chicago, Northwestern, NYU, Rice, Emory,
Georgetown, USC full ride
- state schools stress GPA over SAT + discriminate against out of state (eg, Berkeley)
- private schools stress SAT over GPA
MENTALITY:
1.

RAISE YOUR STANDARDS

2.

confidence / competing: being the BEST and maintaining attitude - you are competing
against best in world, NOT against your classmates
- you BECOME your peer group - the people you surround yourself with you will
become

3.

NOT a lack of resources, but a LACK OF RESOURCEFULNESS that will defeat you
- hustling - 99% of battle is showing up and doing the work, DEMANDING the
opportunity and PROVING that you can handle more
- do NOT take no for an answer

4.

model people who are getting the results you want - look at people 3-4 years ahead of
you, eg, TALK TO SENIORS APPLYING college AS A FRESHMAN

5.

WRITE DOWN GOALS - constantly ADJUST trajectory - airplane analogy - thinking is


simply the process of asking and answering questions - short term, mid, longterm
6

RELEVANT LINKS:

COMPETITION - usa TODAY ALL-USA academic team:


http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/news/2007/gallery/n070517_HSallstars/flash.htm

8 year combined BA/MD programs straight out of high school


http://www.brown.edu/academics/medical/plme/
http://www.feinberg.northwestern.edu/education/degree-programs/hpme/
http://www.bcm.edu/medschool/baccmd.htm

summer research at Stanford for high school students


http://simr.stanford.edu/

Intel Science Talent Search Competition


http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/education/competitions/science-talent-search.html

Columbia Univ. NYC research opportunities - high school students


http://ps.columbia.edu/education/node/1996