Almost a couple months after moving places, the covid-pandemic began and I attended school virtual until the end of 8th grade. In 9th grade I didn't really do as many extracurriculars, I was half committed to an environmental club with a couple volunteer hours. I started building up extracurriculars this academic year (sophomore year) with a pretty vigorous course-load. I have a plan in mind for different activities that I would like to do, and have already started working towards them. By the time I start applying for college, almost all of my activities will be in 10th, 11th and 12th grade. Would this negatively affect my apps?
Idk if this is relevant: I wanna get into Rice.
Hey there, @flora! Obviously starting your extracurriculars early and building on them over time, but starting in sophomore year will be fine too. Rice is generally regarded as a very good school, which means its standards are higher, and it generally requires you to have strong extracurriculars. You can look on the chancing simulator, which will tell you what you need to work on/strengthen before applying to college. For now, focus on showing an upward trend in your academics, commitment to extracurriculars, etc. If you perform well in your activities, it will look good to colleges. Also, colleges will understand that COVID took away many opportunities to join clubs and extracurriculars.
Building your extracurriculars at sophomore year isn't that bad. I only really started to build my extracurriculars in junior year because the lack of extracurriculars at my previous school combined with COVID.
You'll still have a lot of time to invest in clubs and volunteer hours as well as get leadership positions in junior and senior year. It's better late than never.
And as @Anonymous123 said, you have a good excuse: COVID.
10th grade is not too late to start new activities. Colleges don't expect you to start off 9th grade with a clear idea about your passions and a whole bunch of related extracurriculars. On top of that, you have a valid reason: COVID. Just make sure you give sufficient time to whatever activities you choose. It's important to keep in mind that your level of engagement in extracurriculars is more important than how many extracurriculars you're engaged in. High involvement in extracurriculars and a vigorous course load will make you competitive for colleges like Rice.
Hope this helps!
THE EARLIER THE BETTER!
Think about it this way. If the cutoff for accepting people for that year was between two people who have similar backgrounds, but one has more experience in extracurriculars, who would you choose? Personally, I would choose the person with more curriculars as this demonstrates they are more interested and involved in their community. As long as you can manage your work load with your extracurricular load, I would STRONGLY advise you to pursue as many as possible and as many as you would want to.
Tip: Volunteer hours look really good as it shows your commitment to positively affecting your community and your desire to help the environment around you. This also sets you up for possible scholarships for utilizing in your application.
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