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Hello and welcome to CollegeVine!
"Tier 1" activities are typically participated in as a result of you being one of the best students nationally in that field. Due to their hyper-competitive nature, years of practice or deep innate talent are required in order to reach and surpass that level of merit.
Some examples include:
- Ranking in the top ten students in the national competition for a sport
- Internships, either paid or unpaid, at nationally recognized corporations or nonprofits.
- Applying for and attending an extremely selective summer program regarding your past efforts, ie., Research Science Institute
- Building a finished product and releasing it with national recognition (for instance, an application, a website, a video game, etc.)
- Maintaining a social media presence with over a million consistent followers with original and captivating content
- Becoming a published author, whether this means through research, a novel, journalism, or even short stories/plays.
You may see a common thread in many of these: Tier 1 activities are recognized at a national level for their efforts. It may be difficult to start and achieve progress towards one of these activities with only two years remaining before your college applications, but it is always worth a shot.
What have you done so far? What are you passionate about? For every answer you give, there is usually a chance that there is a highly recognized institution or activity regarding that passion. If you feel that you cannot achieve that level in that activity, try finding other passions or working hard in the pre-existing passion until you feel confident in your abilities. Confidence is key here - participating in a Tier 1 activity means you are going to be one of the best high school students in your respective passions, so experiencing that confidence in your way to the top will have better results than not participating in a certain level of your activity because it may be too difficult or you may fail.
Unfortunately, there is no direct guide for participating in any Tier 1 activity, due to how broad a Tier 1 activity can be. Almost every passion has a peak level in which its participants are recognized for their efforts, so it is up to you to find what you are passionate about and work towards that as much as possible.
I wish you the best of luck on your future college applications and activities!