Low GPA as a transfer student
Hello, my name is Elena and I am a transfer sophomore. When I was a freshman in high school, I was dealing with depression and most of it was due to the school I was attending at the time. Due to that my grade dropped rapidly. I have always been an A student but my freshmen year was a very traumatizing period in my life. My GPA in my freshmen year was around 3.4. After transferring, I have been doing very well. The school I currently attend is a rigorous school and one of the top 10 schools in my state. Starting from my Junior year I will be taking IB classes. I have a 4.28 weighted GPA and 4.78 unweighted. I am in my school's Model UN and a key club member. I am also an intern at a law firm and an organization for autism society. This summer I will be studying abroad in the Netherlands. My question is how does a transfer transcript work and how college administrators proceed with transfer transcripts? Will my freshmen year transcript ruin my chances of gaining admission to a top 10 school. My dream schools are Princeton or Stanford. What do I need to know when I apply to competitive schools? What else can I do to make my application stronger?
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Hi Elena! I'm sorry to hear that freshman year was a tough period in your life, but it sounds like you've been seriously rocking it since then! How much your freshman year is going to impact your chances at college admissions: not that much. Yes, your 3.4 is going to pull down your overall numbers, but the good thing about college admissions is that because every application is viewed holistically, admissions officers have room to discount certain numbers or outliers based on your individual circumstances. I don't know what those individual circumstances here were, of course, but it sounds like you are well on your way (and have done plenty already) to proving to prospective colleges that your freshman year of high school was not indicative of who you really are as a student.
College administrators will process and look at transfer transcripts just like they would any other non-transfer transcript. There's nothing particularly good or bad if one year's set of grades is coming from a different school. The most important two things for you to keep in mind: 1. Freshman year is already long in the past! Don't dwell on it, don't let it define you, and don't let it weigh you down, because it's certainly not going to be a defining feature of how any college sees you -- from it! 2. Colleges love seeing improvement and positive, upwards trends. So treat your freshman year as an opportunity to show improvement consistently, year over year, throughout the entire time that you have in high school! Keep working hard, and you'll put yourself in as strong a position as anybody to get into a Princeton or a Stanford.
Yes thank you for asking this question because believe it or not I have the same problem. But to fix it you already have an amazing GPA and when you apply for college just show them where you were struggling and then show them where you got back on track and tell them what changed and they should take that into consideration. Keep up the great work. :)
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