4 years ago
Admissions Advice

Hi! I was wondering if applying to 15 schools is too ambitious, or even selfish?

I know that applying to a lot of schools is super hard, but I want to try to see if I can get into the most prestigious school I can. I'm not gonna list out my stats, but I have a pretty strong application. I am currently planning on applying to 15 schools: Brown, Carnegie Mellon, Case Western, Columbia, GeorgiaTech, Harvey Mudd, MIT, NYU, Rice, Spelman, UC Berkeley, UCLA, University of Houston, USC, and UT Austin. For reference, I live in Texas and I'm high ranked in my class, so I'll automatically get admitted to University of Houston, and I want to major in computer science.I find it hard to make my list smaller, because I think I would love to go to any of these schools, and my parents can afford the application costs. But I know that if I got into a lot of them, then I would be taking spots from other kids. But at the same time, since I'm middle class, I think I'm going to have to evaluate the financial aid each college provides. So basically, I just want to know if I should keep my list, or take some schools off? And if so, which schools? Thanks!

🎉 First post
Let’s welcome @Sck22000 to the community! Remember to be kind, helpful, and supportive in your responses.

Earn karma by helping others:

1 karma for each ⬆️ upvote on your answer, and 20 karma if your answer is marked accepted.

2 answers

Accepted Answer
4 years ago

No, it wouldn't be selfish at all, though I commend you for thinking about how your decision here might affect other applicants. For very accomplished students applying to schools like the ones you've listed, 12-15 schools is honestly around the average. It will be a lot of work, and you'll probably need to work consistently from August through December to be able to finish all of them on time. But being able to negotiate or separately evaluate financial aid offers—especially from the schools you mentioned, which are pretty varied in what they might be able to give you—is a very good reason to send that many applications out. And for schools as selective as these, the best way to ensure that you do ultimately receive some acceptances is to apply to as many as reasonably possible.

As for taking other spots—remember, schools will waitlist applicants who they like a lot but don't necessarily have spots for, so if you were to get into multiple schools and, as necessary, decline the offers you decide not to pursue, those schools would just admit students off of their waitlists. So no, you're not stealing spots from anyone else by applying to several schools.

In any case, I think this is a fine list, since you don't need any additional safeties with the guaranteed admission to UH (and UT, if you're in the top 6% of your class). Best of luck!

4 years ago

@Sck22000, I don't think to apply to 15 schools is being selfish, you're just trying to give yourself the best possible chance you can, and using all the opportunities you get. And your not stealing anybody's spot. Also, I think you should apply to as many colleges and the university's that you'd like especially if you put in all of your best efforts and worked hard to be at the top of your class. You should definitely keep your list and continue to pursue your dreams and goals, you deserve it!

What are your chances of acceptance?
Your chance of acceptance
Duke University
+ add school
Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

Community Guidelines

To keep this community safe and supportive:

  1. Be kind and respectful!
  2. Keep posts relevant to college admissions and high school.
  3. Don’t ask “chance-me” questions. Use CollegeVine’s chancing instead!

How karma works