how do I stack up?

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by lenueve, Mar 26, 2009.

  1. lenueve

    lenueve New Member

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    Hey, I'm a junior in high school and I was if anyone could give me some realistic insight as to how I stack up for West Point. I know I am a pretty average student but I am really passionate about going to West Point and I plan to make sure admissions knows that. I come from one of the highest ranked districts in PA so the education is excellent but the competition is fierce.

    GPA
    about a 3.3
    about a 3.9 weighted

    CLASSES
    4 years English (3 Honors/1 AP)
    4 Years Math (2 Honors)
    4 years Science (3 lab) - Bio, Chem, Physics H, Genetics H
    3 years Spanish Honors
    4 years History (3 Honors/1 AP)
    + IB Psych HL (2 years), Econ H, Art1H

    SPORTS/CLUBS
    4 years Crew - 3 years Varsity
    1 year Cross Country
    2 years Environmental club (sounds lame but very active) - 2 years w/ officer position
    1 year school newspaper
    3 summers in Crew camp

    SAT
    verbal - 700
    math - 560
    writing - 720
    I plan to take the SATs again in June and get my Math score way up. I am taking my first ACTs in June as well.

    My dad also graduated from West Point and went on to serve in the Army Medical Service Corps. for 26 years.
    Are presidential nominations awarded often? Do you have to have a congressional nomination to be considered for presidential nom?

    If I don't get into USMA Class of 2014 I plan on doing college ROTC for a year and applying to class of 2015.
     
  2. chriscross92

    chriscross92 Member

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    your resume is very comprable to mine
     
  3. kaullman

    kaullman Member

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    From a USNA BGO Perspective

    Good. The academies all consider the strength of not only the district, but also the HS.

    Okay, but an upward trend would help. How have you done in Semesters 5 and 6 compared to 1-4.

    # years is less important than which classes. Pre-Calc? Calc? How did you do in higer level maths and lab sciences? Is Int'l Bacc available at your school? Are you part of it? If not, why not? They like to see you challenge yourself academically. Class standing? They'd like to see upper 10%, or at least upper 20%.

    The leadership piece is key. If you lead an organization, what did you DO for the org? Are you a leader on varsity Crew? The admissions board likes those things that you persist at. Doing something for four years is MUCH better than trying four different things.

    You already see that the Math score is an issue. Prep for your next SAT and your ACT.

    A plus which will help, I'm not sure how much weight it carries.

    Presidential noms/appts are less competitive than MOCs. You do not need a MOC nom to be considered for Presidential nom. Your dad's service qualifies you for the presidential nom consideration.

    It's good to have a Plan B. You look reasonably competitive as you stand with an upward GPA for Sems 5, 6, and 7.

    Good luck.
     
  4. lenueve

    lenueve New Member

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    kaullman, thanks for the really helpful comments

    In response to the IB question, yes IB is offered at my school and I actually did take it. I dropped out after one semester -- I was maintaining As and Bs but the people and the atmosphere had me severely depressed. I realize this is a huge problem with my transcript and probably a determining factor :frown:


    However, it's interesting to note that the other girl applying to USMA from my school also dropped IB...
     
  5. kaullman

    kaullman Member

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    Go for it, With your Eyes Open

    I asked that question simply so that you can prepare yourself to answer it.

    No single item will be a determinate factor, certainly not something you decided early on. You see the bumps in your record; you see the pluses you have there too. You've still got 1/2 of sem 6 and your sem finals to create your "upward academic trend." You've got opportunities to get better at SAT and do well at ACT. You have all summer to prep for the CFA. You can't change the past, but you can show how well you're doing now. Do it!
     
  6. _NH

    _NH New Member

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    Don't worry -- IB as a plus is not all cracked up to be. I wonder, though, why was the atmosphere depressing? I am writing about IB and I would love your honest opinion for my research.

    Thanks.
     
  7. lenueve

    lenueve New Member

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    Hey _NH
    I think the thing about IB that I hated the most were the people that I did it with. I think they're all very smart and they will go places but when I signed up for the program I was expecting a much more supportive, family-like atmosphere than the one I entered into. There was so much competition and everyone was so judgmental. It holds true that IB and AP and even honors classes attract hard-working and motivated individuals and I do think that competition can be a positive force that gets things done, but there was SO MUCH and eventually I got sick of dealing with everyone's inferiority/superiority complexes. My classmates were constantly comparing test grades, community service hours - everything imaginable. I realize that I'm operating in an idealist teenage state of mind, but I think that high school should be so much more than this. I am much happier in honors classes now because they are not full of kids who think they are, forgive me, "hot ****."

    I also think that IB, at least at my school, falsely advertises. It is supposed to be a program for people who want the big picture perspective, the global view...people who love learning and want to do it an environment where learning, rather than memorizing, is encouraged. THIS IS NOT WHAT IB IS. I couldn't list 5 things that I learned in my semester in IB than I would not have learned in a normal class. The subjects are the same, the teachers teach the same way, and I did more pointless memorizing than I had in any previous course. There is one exception: IB English was an amazing class and it gave me a new view and understanding of literature that has enhanced my writing skills a lot. The biggest difference between IB and a normal class is the pace. IB is a lot of reading and a lot of memorizing. Teachers give you the material and expect you to take care of it because you are an "advanced learner." Expectations are high and they often snub the students. For example, in my Physics class, of which more than half the kids were SL students (basically they wanted a less in depth study of physics), the teacher would introduce a new subject and, even though it was clear no one really understood, she would give a test because she had to keep with the schedule. I understand the time constraints in IB are real and necessary but it is up to the teacher to TEACH the class - clearly something is wrong if everyone is struggling.

    Sorry for the rant, I feel very passionate about IB and its problems. I think the program is based on great ideas but perhaps my school's administration is having trouble realizing them.

    If you have any questions, please ask! I am a fountain of criticism.
     
  8. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    lenueve -
    tell me about your math education - what level of math are you at now and where will you be in your senior year.
    Do you know your class rank? The majority of cadets ranked in the top 20% of their class.

    Besides crew - do you have any leadership experience?

    West Point looks for prospectives who are scholar/leader/athletes. While some candidates are strong in all areas many are very strong in only one area - or two areas. Those who are strong in only one area tend to be typically very very strong.

    As far as being academically qualified - you math SAT is a little bit low. That could be offset by a strong math curriculum and math grades - i.e. if you will taking Calculus your senior year.

    What you have going for you positively is a strong CR SAT score and some AP Courses. If you took and passed the tests that is a plus.
    Your years of crew shows athleticism and if you are interested Army has a crew team.
    Your appear to be eligible for a Presidential nomination - if your father is indeed retired. The Presidential nomination is an entitiled service connected nomination. Everyone who is eligible for one gets one so lack of a nomination won't stand in your way.
    Did you apply to SLS?
    If not I urge you to go here:
    http://admissions.usma.edu/apply.cfm
    read the prospectus and begin an online application.
    You may also refer to the Class of 2012 profile to see where you stack up:
    http://www.usma.edu/Class/2012/profile.asp
     
  9. McMom

    McMom Member

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    SAT scores

    My son was offered an appointment to West Point with a lower SAT score than yours. Thought that would ease your anxiety a little over your Math score. His strengths are in leadership, GPA is 3.97 and he graduates this year. But since he was actually applying for USMMA he had to retake it (chose the ACT instead) because he didn't score their minimum requirement. He scored higher with the ACT test (thankfully!) and I think he'd recommend it over the SAT!
     
  10. SpartanShock117

    SpartanShock117 Candidate

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    Try not to play the how do I compare game, I did like so many other people on this site ... and it will drive you crazy, you have a pretty good resume. just keep trying to make it better in every respect. Like the admissions people told me last year "I can't guarantee that you'll get in, but I can guarantee that you won't if you do not apply". good luck
     
  11. USMAGrad07

    USMAGrad07 New Member

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    If you're planning to go to USMA, with those stats and being a legacy appointee, I wouldn't go so far as to say you're a shoe-in so that you don't coast through your senior year, but I would be shocked if you didn't get in.
     

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