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β€’ 10/13/2020 at 03:41PM

What is the ideal array of extracurriculars for elite colleges?

I was wondering what the ideal set of extracurriculars would be for elite colleges; mostly a question of how diverse they should be. We are assuming that someone has perfect or near perfect SAT/ACT scores and GPA and has taken/will take 15+ AP classes. If this person could consistently obtain any lower A tier or upper B tier extracurricular that he/she wanted (no curing cancer or anything like that), what would be the best arrangement? Would all extracurriculars focus on the same subject/activity? What arrangement(s) maximize(s) acceptance rate to elite colleges? (Assuming a maximum of 10 extracurriculars.)

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1 answer

β€’ 10/13/2020 at 05:48PM

So as Vinay (co-founder of CV) says you should have an area of specialty that a portion of tour ECs are part of that umbrella group such as DECA shift supervisor at insert fast food and you won an FBLA tournament. Your specialty/spike would be business then you would surround it with your interests/passions whether that's anime debate drawing etc. It doesn't really matter what your spike is unless it's related to your major than it's only a bonus as long as you show you have responsibilities/leadership/accolades and are community involved. Just an anecdote according to collegevine I have strong ECs (not excellent) at Harvard despite my highest tier is D and my average tier is F but if your only EC is you won the NSDA national tournament you still would have a good shot as that's quality over quantity. Hope this helps and please comment if you'd like clarification as I'd be happy to help.

Accepted Answer
[🎀 AUTHOR]@CollegeR10/13/2020 at 07:04PM

Very helpful, thank you! Do you know what the approximate proportion of time spent on (or number of) spike activities to time spent on (or number of) interest/passion activities should be?

@DebaterMAX10/13/2020 at 08:12PM

Really it depends but typically 3-5 activities are your spike and if you spend 10hr on ECs a week and you have 4 spike activities try to have it be 4hr. So Id say have all spike activities roughly equal to the equation of time spent on ECs/# of activities or over that. Agin this can vary but this is what Id say is a typical breakdown.