Institution: Columbia University
Study: Major in computer science
High School Experience
I graduated in 2019, and I went to a really really tiny public high school in Northern Nevada. I had a fantastic time at school. Being in a small school (my grade was only 20 kids) was really irritating a lot of the time, but I made it work well and benefited from the small class sizes.
I had a limited class selection because I went to such a small school so I just took every AP that I was allowed to take and that mostly determined my schedule. It was a good mix of stem and humanities classes.
AP Computer Science A: 5
AP Comp Science Principles: 4
AP Statistics: 4
AP Environmental Science: 4
AP Language: 5
AP US History: 4
AP Calculus AB: 2
AP Literature: 3
AP US Government: 3
AP Biology: 5
4. unweighted, 4.6 weighted
SAT Math 2: 660
SAT Environmental Biology: 680
SAT US History: 780
I was involved in a lot of the clubs at school but it was mostly sports and volunteering groups and by senior year I had various leadership positions in some of them.
I was really really close with my english/computer science teacher who wrote my letter of recommendation, and I still talk to her all the time even since graduating.
I wrote a lot of essays for applications, so I changed themes, but leadership and hard work were the two biggest things I tried to highlight through personal experiences.
I was well rounded, and I think I showed that I cared about things in my community and other people’s issues.
I think the college application process is such a crapshoot and it’s hard to have solid rules to follow but I think it’s important to show that you’re a unique applicant that can tick whatever boxes necessary and have a memorable and interesting narrative.
I’m gay, and I mentioned that on my app so maybe that added a few “diversity points” but I have no clue.
I really liked the idea of a city university, and I think a small private university is more effective at supporting students than large public ones. I got offers from UCLA and UC Berkeley as well and was in between these three schools.