Best Safety Schools for Ivy League Applicants?Answered
Preferably east/west coast. Safety but still strong and with good resources.
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I was an Ivy League applicant from Texas, and here are the safety schools I applied to and why:
A&M: super safety, guaranteed acceptance due to state policy regarding top 10%, got in but was one of my more expensive options due to large size, about 60% admit rate.
Similar schools: state universities
Trinity University: this was my real safety school. I knew my chances of getting in were extremely high but it's still a top rated school in my state and I knew my scholarships would probably be good based on their website's information. This is basically the equivalent of any small-ish university in the upper end of the state level rankings, acceptance rate about 30%
Similar schools: these are gonna be your top five or so universities in the state. This can be the state you live in, if it's a state like Texas with lots of options, or something in a neighboring state. You could even look at these kinds of schools lower down in the rankings in states with very heavy educational densities like NY or MA.
Boston University: this doesn't really count as a safety since it's still pretty prestigious, but it was my top choice for "safeties" and my most likely admit on the East Coast. Scholarships there are top notch and it's a great school, but it'll be easier to get into than the ivies. Acceptance rate about 18%
Similar Schools: These are gonna be the ones listed elsewhere that aren't really safeties but still make excellent backups to Ivy. Carnegie Mellon, Northeastern, Tufts, Colgate, etc
So basically, the heart of the matter is that in my opinion it's good to have multiple levels of safety school. Lucky for me, I got into all three of my safeties (it felt like leveling up, since they kinda release decisions in order of difficulty due to longer admit processes) and didn't need them. But it was nice knowing, when Ivy day came around, that I could still leave and go to a good school with good scholarships. So I think what I did worked very well for me, picking out three safeties ranging from "super safety" to "easier than ivy". This way I knew I would be alright.
Disclaimers: I don't know much about the West Coast stuff, but I would say these guidelines would still apply. And I could apply to schools for free due to a fee waiver and thus was able to apply to more schools without added cost.
A lot of the schools that people are suggesting here are not truly safeties- although slightly easier to get into (purely by acceptance rate and academics) they are still really hard to get into. Definitely apply to these places, but you should also apply to one large public institution in your state as a fall back option just in case.
NYU, USC, UC Berkeley, UCLA, Carnegie Mellon,
State schools (and you can even get merit scholarships + get into the honors colleges if your stats are high)
I’ve heard positive things about Whitman and Reed on the west coast as good safety school. Most of the schools others have suggested are not necessarily safety schools in terms of acceptance rates
UCLA, UC Berkley, USC, NYU, UNC Chapel Hill, Duke University, Clemson University
Without knowing what yo want some excellent schools that are less competitive then Ivies are CMU GATECH USC Tufts Wake Forest Duke. The admit rate at the Claremont colleges and the little ivies (Bates Bowdoin Colby) are comparable to ivies but they have lower average stats so they are worth a look.
Berkeley, NYU, Tufts, Amherst, or Carnegie Mellon.
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