8 Ways To Increase Admission Chances At An Ivy League School

Here are a few practical ways to prove your worth, invest in your passions and get into the school of your dreams.

Ivy League schools are notoriously difficult to get into. With an average acceptance rate of just 7%, these universities are highly selective. Their admissions officers aim to accept only the best and brightest students.

Fortunately, you can increase your chances by fully showcasing your potential. The Ivy Leagues want leaders and people who will change the world. If you can convince them you’re that type of person, you may find yourself part of that lucky 7%.

Here are a few practical ways to prove your worth, invest in your passions and get into the school of your dreams.

1. Meet the Basic Requirements

Of course, one of the best ways to increase admission chances is to meet the basic application requirements. Ideally, you’d exceed these baseline standards and blow all other applicants out of the water.

However, everyone has to start somewhere, especially first-year high-school students who are just beginning to build a GPA and study for the ACTs and SATs.

As students work their way through high school, their main focus should be maintaining a high GPA and earning a stellar standardized test score. This way, they won’t have to worry about meeting the requirements for attending their dream university.

8 Ways To Increase Admission Chances At An Ivy League School

2. Apply Early

If you’re dead-set on attending a specific Ivy League school, consider applying during the early decision or early action periods. Doing so will increase the chance of admission because early decision is a binding offer, which means that if a student receives an acceptance letter, they must attend that school. Early action works similarly but doesn’t require a commitment.

Applying early shows colleges that a student is genuinely interested in studying there. More importantly, they’re already promising to attend if they get accepted, which is an enticing offer for schools that depend on revenue from tuition and room and board.

3. Express Genuine Interest

Highly selective colleges like the Ivy Leagues want to know they aren’t just a safety school backup. Therefore, it’s important to express genuine interest, and applying early is just one way to prove your enthusiasm.

Express curiosity and passion by visiting the campus and taking a tour. Meet professors in your prospective field of study, talk to department heads, and chat with students and alumni.

8 Ways To Increase Admission Chances At An Ivy League School

Of course, not all elite schools worry about accepting students that might snub them. Thus, it’s important to know whether a visit will truly make a difference or if it’ll prove to be a waste of time.

Luckily, students can easily determine which schools value demonstrated interest by visiting a website like CollegeData.com, which provides information regarding how individual colleges rate 19 different admission factors.

4. Write an Impressive Essay

Whether you’re a mediocre applicant or an all-star student, a well-written supplemental essay can help you stand out from the crowd. More importantly, it can improve a student’s chances of receiving that coveted admission letter.

When you sit down to write yours, make a conscious effort to produce an interesting and compelling narrative. Use storytelling to share your passions, interests, and dreams. Why do you want to major in psychology? When did you realize you wanted to be a history professor?

Dig deep and be authentic. After all, no one’s story is quite like yours, so you might as well showcase your uniqueness.

5. Choose Jobs Wisely

When it comes down to choosing between students with similar academic achievements, many admissions officers base their decision on volunteer work, internships, and jobs. While most jobs with college relevance look good on a college application, some may be more persuasive than others.

8 Ways To Increase Admission Chances At An Ivy League School

For instance, admissions counselors may be more likely to admit a student lifeguard than someone who worked at a coffee shop for four years. Why? Because the lifeguarding job came with significant responsibilities and life-and-death consequences. Your CPR and first-aid training might even come in handy on a college campus.

6. Resist Mediocrity

Many teachers, counselors, and parents advise students to be well-rounded, and high schoolers aiming for Ivy League schools often oblige. They spend countless hours playing sports, volunteering, joining clubs, and learning an instrument, all while trying to earn straight As.

Eventually, many spread themselves too thin and burn out. Instead of being well-rounded, these students become a jack of all trades but a master of none. In other words, they graduate a mediocre student, and mediocre people don’t change the world — nor do they attend Yale or Harvard.

7. Focus Your Energy

Therefore, it’s best to find your niche and completely invest yourself in it. Focus all your energy into that one hobby, subject, or industry and work on developing thought leadership in it. Doing so will require consistent effort, focus, and discipline, but you’ll set yourself apart from other applicants.

Of course, putting so much time and energy into developing a specialization may cause a student to fall short elsewhere. However, it’s completely acceptable to be less than perfectly balanced if you develop your area of expertise well enough.

For example, if an Ivy League school is recruiting you for a sport, you don’t need to focus on getting a high GPA or a perfect ACT score. Earn good enough grades to prove you can make it through college and focus on improving your athleticism instead.

8. Be Confident

For many students, the mere thought of applying to a prestigious Ivy League school can incite panic. What if they aren’t good enough to attend? In these instances, imposter syndrome can discourage and even prevent some high school graduates from sending in their applications. However, you’ll never know if you’ll get into your dream school unless you try.

So be confident and trust you’ve done all you can to prove your worth. More importantly, let that confidence shine in your essay and follow-up interviews. Admissions officers love to see strength and determination in applicants because these traits signify leaders and world-changers.

Focus on You

While attending and graduating from an Ivy League school can improve your reputation and even land you a high-paying job, college admissions shouldn’t be the focus of high schoolers’ lives. They can still follow their dreams and get a stellar education elsewhere.

Besides, the fundamental goal of your life should be to nurture your passions so you can make achievements — whether or not you make it into Princeton.

So, for right now, just focus on yourself. Let the competition and a love for knowledge fuel your desire to learn and succeed.

Oscar Collins

Oscar Collins is the managing editor at Modded, where he writes about a variety of topics, including the most recent trends in tech. Follow him on Twitter @TModded for regular updates!

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