2 years ago
Admissions Advice

Balancing course load and extracurriculars

I'm a high achieving student and I'm sophomore going into junior year. I already taking mostly honors and AP courses, my GPA is unweighted 3.9, weighted 4.5. I am a varsity cross country runner and varsity swimmer and team captain, I also am a Speech and Debate treasurer, class representative and President of SkillsUSA at my school. This year I took 3 AP classes and 4 honors and felt pretty swamped most the time. My counselor is reviewing junior year registration with me and if I were to follow the standard course progression for my school based off my previous coursework and grades I would take AP English Lang and Comp, AP Spanish Lang and Culture, AP Chem, AP Calc BC, APUSH, AP CompSci, and AP Music Theory next year. This would be on top of my student leadership class leaving me with only one off period. I am trying to figure out what I should keep and get rid of next year so I don't burn out and have my midlife crisis when I'm 16. Any suggestions on what AP and extracurriculars look the best to colleges and which ones I should get rid of?

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Let’s welcome @afarley to the community! Remember to be kind, helpful, and supportive in your responses.
@cruz.alex2 years ago

What is skillUSA? Also, what colleges are you planning to apply?

[🎤 AUTHOR]@afarley2 years ago

SkillsUSA is an organization that helps students learn vocational skills and earn certifications. I'm president of the Aircraft Maintenance program. I take courses for my A and P certificate, I help organize fundraisers and competitions where we showcase our skills, and meet with industry professionals. SkillsUSA has programs for anything from Auto Shop to Cosmetology. For college, I'm not certain yet, I want to major in aerospace engineering and do ROTC, I've looked at Texas A+M, also USAFA.

[🎤 AUTHOR]@afarley2 years ago

I just realized that I used a bunch of abbreviations you're probably not familiar with. An A and P certificate is an Airframe and Power Plant certification which allows you to work as a mechanic on most aircraft and aircraft systems, ROTC is the Reserve Officers' Training Corps, it is a scholarship though the US military where they pay for your college and in exchange you have to serve as an officer for a minimum of four years. USAFA is the United States Air Force Academy.

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2 years ago

Colleges like to see passion and leadership in a few extracurriculars rather than a little in many. Bonus if you're extracurriculars correlate with what you want to major in. Try to become president in the clubs you love or get more accomplished, colleges love that. With AP classes I would drop anything I'm not really interested in. For example for me that would be music theory. You don't want to overexert yourself. (I'm also a sophomore and been doing a lot of research since quarantine started)


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