Ivy League schools are every student’s dream, and to get into a good Ivy League school, it is necessary to stand out in every possible way. The need to stand out becomes a necessity as there are a large number of applications that are received by Ivy League schools every year. Hence, along with compelling grades and scores, students are now finding every other way to make it unique. The interviewers will only have seconds to invest in each application, so you must look into every possible way to get them to look at yours. This blog attempts to provide insight and advice on how to design your application in such a way that you will be admitted to the prestigious Ivy League schools.
These are the tips to stand out in the Ivy League college admissions process.
There cannot be a precise time at which you can start your application. But strong applicants always start their Ivy League applications at a very early stage. This will give the students a head start and allow them to better understand the application's features.
Most of the academic prompts are released for the next academic year as early as August. Understanding which college to choose will require the help of good academic counselors and even your family members as well. Working on the applications as soon as possible and way before the deadline will help you structure them without haste.
Also Read : Mistakes to avoid when applying to a university
2. Do thoughtful college research
The first step will be to start researching the colleges that you can apply to and the ones that have your expected course of study. Then filter the schools down to five to ten. Once you've narrowed down your choices, it's time to talk to current students or alumni to learn more about the educational systems at the colleges you've chosen. Most of the schools ask the question, "Why our school?" and this is one of the questions that they ask to understand the genuine interest of students and their ambitions in the best possible way. Take the help of someone who has done the process before and got into the Ivy League schools to aid you in completing the application well before the deadline.
3. Choose your recommenders wisely
Recommendation letters play a vital role in the admissions process, and Ivy League schools look into them crucially. Teachers are the go-to options when it comes to recommendations, but careful consideration has to be given in order to understand how the recommendation letters are drafted in the first place. It is critical to write recommendation letters that are not generic, but rather highlight the student's skills and qualities. So, make sure to get the recommendation of the teacher who knows you well and give them enough time to draft a great recommendation letter.
4. Take time to write strong essays
Writing essays, especially for the Ivy League, is not easy. It can be difficult to gather your thoughts and align them effectively to write the most effective and standout essay. Leaving the essays until the last minute can even cost you admission to your Ivy League dream school. So, when you have shortlisted the school, start creating a framework of the ideas and inputs that you want to be part of the essay. Getting your teachers or mentors to read the essay will provide proper feedback, which can be used to tidy up your essay. Proofreading is a must and has to be done, as both content and presentation are of prime importance to the admission officers.
5. Answer the optional supplemental questions
There are different facets in the application form that are there to test different dimensions of the student, so it is ideal to not leave any of the questions blank, even if they are optional in nature. These questions will help guide the application evaluator to a better understanding of your accomplishments and how your personality stands out among the umpteen number of applicants that have sent applications. Attempting these questions will also showcase you in a better light and convey your vigour to be admitted into the college and course.
6. Submit supplemental materials
Attaching supplemental materials if you have the option to do so can give your application a unique touch. It will not be ideal to attach any more essays of any sort that have not been requested by the Ivy League school. The supplemental materials are videos or other proofs that showcase your talent as a good singer or actor, or anything of the sort. These can be attached to your application even if you do not plan to pursue any such related courses. Some colleges ask for a supplemental recommendation letter; this letter has to be written by a standout who has a clear idea about your positive traits and co-curricular abilities.
7. Emphasize uniqueness, leadership, and impact
Profiling your entire activities and the time that you have invested in your schoolwork in the most exclusive way is your best chance of making the application outstanding in the eyes of the experts who evaluate your application. Highlighting the extracurricular activities you have done in school or giving due consideration to how you have organized a school programme will help you focus on your leadership and team involvement efficiently. This can help you visualise your thought process, perceptions, and problem-solving skills.
8. Submit test scores strategically
In the midst of the pandemic, there are several changes to taking the exam, as they have implemented a test-optional policy for students. This can help them decide whether or not to send the test scores. Opting for this can be done after analysing the previous performances and the scores obtained on the same. If those scores are the best representation of your academic strengths, then you can choose to opt out of the exam, and if not, it will be ideal to sit in and score well for your finals.
9. Practice interviews
Now, once you have made your maximum effort to make your application stand out, the next step is to outshine your competition through the interviews scheduled by the Ivy League schools. These interviews are a tough nut to crack and thereby require a lot of effort from the students to make the best impression in front of the admissions panel. So, one has to take enough time to practice and understand the variety of questions that might be asked throughout the interview process. This will help instill confidence and help the students to be in focus and answer to the point without bragging or fiddling with thoughts.
10. Be honest and genuine
None of the students is perfect, and the academic counsellors at the Ivy League schools are well aware of these facts, so it will not be necessary to make an impression of something you are not. So, if you are able to communicate about your skills and achievements, and if you can show that you are capable of growth and development, it might be very helpful to keep your application among the front runners. Showing you in the best possible light and in a way that the academic counsellors can connect with you is one of the best tips to stand out in the Ivy League college admissions process and ensure that you secure the most coveted place in an Ivy League school.
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