4 years ago
Admissions Advice

How do I stand out as a STEM major?

STEM is a very, very large field and a lot of students are majoring in it. As such, I want to know what will make me stand out compared to other STEM majors.


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3 answers

Accepted Answer
4 years ago

To stand out try to achieve something that is not that common.

1.) Win a National level STEM competition like the INTEL science awards, State level would be excellent as well.

2.) Get your research published in an Int'l/National journal that is widely respected. Or be mentioned as a contributor to the research paper as evidence of your ability.

3.) Patent your design for something unique with the US Patents & Trademarks service. This could be something like a device, methodology, or a process.

4.) Get a high profile internship at a Research University like Stanford etc. Yes, HS students have been known to do something like that.

5.) Take classes not available at your HS, for instance, higher-level math or astrophysics.

6.) Create a youtube channel that is STEM which is either educational or entertaining about STEM topics.

7.) Start a STEM-related nonprofit like refurbishing and repurposing laptops to kids who come from marginalized backgrounds

8.) Start a STEM club that is not generic like a robotics club.

9.) If you identify as female, non-binary start a STEM club to support and advance STEM topics to girls/non-binary kids who are smart

10.) Pursue a STEM hobby project that is unusual like applying physics concepts to creating new cooking or baking recipes.

Getting top test scores alone is not enough to stand out because 93% of MIT and CalTech applicants get rejected and they are all super smart kids by most people's standards.

Good luck!

4 years ago

Another idea is starting a podcast where you can maybe talk about your favorite math and science subjects. when you gain more viewers you can start answering their questions and make it more interactive. Having an audience like will definitely set you apart.

you can use the app Anchor to help you record your podcast and distribute it on platforms like spotify and stuff for free!

good luck!!

4 years ago

So Camerons are very elite but if you are going for a competitive school lets say Penn State with a 49% admit rate. You can be president of a STEM based club. Also you can have an internship my city has a few fortune 500 companies HQed here and one has an internship program that is semicompetive last I checked it had like 43% acceptance rate. So it isnt out of reach.

Also show interest in stem whether via blog YT channel etc.

Also be unique dont be the stereotypical elite STEM applicant president of robotic and a winner of a regional comeptetion.

As an inetended engineer major my most impressive thing is Im a national circuit debator which the near opposite of STEM. But id bring that into my essay about research and problem solving and making series of events charts. Also showing any type of accomplishment in STEM is fairly hard as there arent a whole lot of non ivy caliber activities but still impressive. Any tpe of leadership is good as long as it is meaningful.

Hope this helps!

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Your chance of acceptance
Duke University
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Your chancing factors
Unweighted GPA: 3.7
SAT: 720 math
| 800 verbal


Low accuracy (4 of 18 factors)

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