Indecisive student... too many options
Hi! I'm currently a fall semester junior in Oregon and I currently have a 3.72 gpa. I did really bad on the PSAT (I got a 1060) and I'm a super anxious test taker. I am taking 3 AP classes this year and I dropped a class last year during covid which probably also looks bad on my transcript. I have been loosely refining a college list for a couple months and I have 29 schools on it right now. I have one in state that is also a safety but I could definitely see myself ending up there, I just want more options. A majority of the schools I applied to are reach schools (my family is all super smart and I think I'm smart just not in the same ways and I don't see myself thriving in a super competitive environment.) I have a few targets I've been thinking about since middle school (Brandeis and UCSB) but I am also very involved in ice skating and I want to mostly apply to schools that have good skating programs (UMich, BU, and UCLA are three of the best that I've been considering) but so many of those schools are so hard to get into and I don't feel like I stand out a whole lot as a student. I want to get in somewhere (obviously) but I also want to be active in skating and ideally I would like some sort of queer community there as well. Does anyone have any school recommendations for me?
1) colleges are very understanding right now because of Covid. Don't be afraid to explain the lack of test scores and dropping a class in the Additional info section, this could really help you out and boost you above students who don't struggle with these things!
2) I use RaiseMe, this website, and Youtube videos to help me choose between schools. If a school has no or easy supplementals, just apply (assuming you can afford it or have a waiver). If a lot of work goes into the application, then it's time to consider how interested you actually are. So in short: apply to the schools that are easy to apply to, and then consider which of the others are worth any extra effort. Good luck, you got this!
Hi there @meiraclara,
These are all very valid concerns and narrowing down a school list is one of the most difficult parts of starting the admissions process.
As a starting point, you can use our School List builder to craft a preliminary list of schools that you are interested in. You can filter by rankings, program offerings, tuition cost, and a lot of other requirements that you may have. I recommend that you check out our school list articles (here’s an example) as well, to get a better idea of what is important to you and how to find that in higher education institutions.
From there, you should also look into what current students are saying about the school, watch livestreams or YouTube videos about what it's like to attend the school, and participate in the specific programs you are interested in. I would also use our school list tool to build a spreadsheet and add a column with your own personal comments for each school so that it can serve as a guide during your entire admissions process.
Hope this helps and best of luck!
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