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06/25/2020 at 11:47PM
Admissions Advice

What can I do to stand out more?

I am in the class of 2022, and will be going into my junior year next year. I feel like I am not doing enough for my application right now. I am looking for ways to boost it. Here are some of the things that I am interested in as well as some of the things that I have already done.

Varsity Track and Field (since freshman year) went to sectionals

Orchestra. I have played violin since 7th grade and I played viola before. I have been in regional since my freshman year and I was an alternate for all state this year. I am the concertmaster of my high school orchestra and I am in my cities youth orchestra which is nationally recognized.

I am in HOSA and won 1st at RLC and SLC and am competing at ILC this week.

I am in Speech and Debate and AMC (Math Club)

I am a mentor for underclassmen at my school

I tutor at Kumon

I am the president of a Youth Philanthropy chapter at my school which is connected to OSU.

I am starting a nonprofit for underprivileged students in my city.

I am interested in music, history, biology, biochemistry. I am looking for more ways to get involved with my interests.


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2 answers

06/26/2020 at 03:53PM

Hi! Another rising junior here. You are doing a lot, so don’t worry about needing to boost your extracurriculars. If you do anything else it will actually hurt your chances. It’s good that you have that balance of in-school and out-of-school extracurriculars as well as clubs/ativities which showcase your leadership abilities. The worst thing is to have 10 or 20 activities where you are simply a participant or have a low-ranking position. Sure it’s impressive that you are so involved, but those groups would not showcase that you are a leader or that you can start and maintain your own initiate. Fortunately you haven’t run into any of those issues so far but that is definitely something you want to look out for. Honestly you DO NOT want to add anything else; you will look frenetic and too spread out/scattered. Focus on rising in leadership ranks in a couple of those activities, as well as putting greater time/commitent into them to make them large investments and stand-out activities. You really only need one or two MAJOR “breakthrough” type things- don’t think of it as 5x-20% activities to get to that 100% goal, but rather 2x-50%. Less is more, as long as you make the “more” by putting the time and investment into your personal projects.

I will be quite honest your extracurriculars do not align with science as they are mostly sports, music, and speech/debate. The mentor/tutoring is a less specific activity so you can omit that from this “bucketing” or “categorization” process for your ECs. You need to add something science-related or STEM if you want to pursue science in college, point blank. Best ones for you to join are science olympiad/science quiz bowl, science fair/research, and science honor society (for next year). You also want to make sure you are taking advanced science classes, and stem electives. Also I would strongly consider taking the sat subject test. hope this helps!!

06/26/2020 at 12:27AM

Assuming you are going for ivy+ schools (Harvard,mit Stanford rice etc) if you want to go to a public school that is anything other than Virginia UCLA UC Berk Mich you should be fine

So I see great clubs but I see a lack of leadership essentially few presidents or officers so run for like 3 places At end of junior year run for these positions.

Also from your username you seem to be of Asian ethnicity and you definitely aren’t a stereotypical applicant so that is a big plus.

First of all I’d say forget about the nonprofit it is kinda a bit too cliche and doesn’t fit into into any of your majors and you are tutoring so helping others is still fulfilled.

Some suggestions for bio ECs

Science Olympiad


Chem/Bio club


Blog about a rare historical event each week or something similiar

Join a history club etc


Keep doing orchestra

History is your weakest area just to keep in mind.

This year if you decide you aren’t interested in the sciences


Not like go History

Drop the history related clubs

Not like music


But if you ever drop something becuase of time restraints/studying I’d drop debate as you received few accolades there and is not super relevant to you major(s)

Hope this helps

Comment if you need clarification


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