I know, I hate these things too...

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by armybratkl, Jul 15, 2009.

  1. armybratkl

    armybratkl Member

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    ... but I can't stop worrying about my GPA.
    My first two years of high school I kinda slacked, and now I regret it.
    I have a 3.496, unweighted. My parents have told me not to worry about it because of the classes I've taken, but I can't help it.

    My school in 7th and 8th grade was an integrated middle and high school, so I was able to take some high school classes (with other high schoolers, not a middle school class).
    7th grade:
    German I
    Algebra I (tested out of 7th and 8th grade math)

    8th grade:
    German II
    Geometry

    9th:
    German III
    Algebra II
    Biology I
    Honors Literature
    Honors World History (hon lit and hon world hist. were integrated, so I got one grade for two classes... it's a bit weird and hard to explain)
    A computer class (can't remember the name...)
    1 semester health, 1 semester PE

    10th:
    1 semester German IV (I moved, and the German program was far behind the one I took before, so I dropped it since I wasn't learning anything)
    Spanish II (my Spanish I teacher moved me up a year because I picked up on the language quickly, even though I had no previous spanish knowledge)
    Trigonometry (1 semester)
    Advanced Pre-Calculus (1 semester)
    Personal Finance (1 quarter), Drivers' Ed (1 quarter)
    Sports PE (1 semester)
    International Relations (1 semester)
    Oral/Written Communications (required at my school -- they wouldn't let me into the honors lit program)
    Physics I

    11th:
    Honors Spanish III
    Honors Calculus
    Honors Physics II
    Honors Chemistry I
    American Literature (1 semester)
    Expository Writing I (1 semester)
    American History

    Planned for 12th
    Honors Spanish IV
    Honors Chemistry II
    Honors College Bound Reading (1 semester)
    Expository Writing II (1 semester)
    Discrete Math I & II (which is basically statistics and similar stuff)
    Sociology (1 semester)
    Government (1 semester)
    Lab Assistant for Physics II (will explain...)

    I got a bit screwed over by the HS I currently attend. My HS before was on a military installation in Germany, so naturally it wasn't very large -- maybe 390, 400 students. The honors literature/world history was the only honors program offered to me. So, when I moved to where I currently live, I transferred to a school that has 2500+ students. Here, they have tons of different levels of math programs -- there's Algebra IA, Advanced Algebra I, and then Honors Algebra I. Well, I had only taken a mere regular Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II. Then, I also made the mistake of requesting to go into physics instead of chemistry. The prerequisite for physics was to have been or be enrolled in Advanced Algebra II -- no good for me, because as I was told by a guidance counselor (not mine), "students who transfer here often find themselves far behind." So, she put me in Advanced Algebra II, which was the exact same thing I'd taken the year before. I basically had to beg to be allowed to enter regular trigonometry -- I don't understand why they didn't have me take a placement test, it would have been much easier. Anyway, I basically slept through the class, and ended up with a 98 for the semester. It was far too easy for me. On top of that, I wasn't allowed into the Honors Physics I class because I lacked the honors prerequisite in math (and Honors Physics would have made me eligible for college credits and an AP test) I was also not allowed into the honors literature program, because the Oral and Written Comm programs are required for my high school, and additionally, I was told I couldn't take a class called "Honors Literature" because it had the same name as the class I took the year before.

    As you can see, all of my teachers recommended me for the honors programs after my sophomore year, but there's still those two years that look weak in my transcript. (Plus, I'm the kind of person who slacks in easy classes because I get bored, so that didn't help.)

    For my senior year, I also had a bit of trouble. I planned to take Honors Economics and Honors Expository Writing II, but neither of those would fit into my schedule, so I was forced to drop the honors and take sociology instead of economics. There was no higher math class for me to take than Honors Calculus (which, btw, had the top 25 math students in the entire school of 2500), so Discrete Math is the only thing left for me to take, since I don't have time to take Calc II & III at a local community college. The lab assistant, although it looks like a slacker class, is there for my leadership side. For Honors Physics II, we were required to be on the school's Robotics team. I was chosen to be the Chief Administrative Officer. I took the lab assistant class because I was requested to be the Chief Executive Officer this coming year.

    Anyway, I've got my varsity letter in swimming and a possible swim team captain, my robotics leadership, and I know I'll be good after some more training for the CFA. I got a 34 on my ACT (35 Eng/34 M/33 R/35 Sci). So basically, my GPA and class rank are the only weak spots (I think my class rank is somewhere right at top 20th; it was 22nd % last semester, but I brought my GPA up a bit -- it also doesn't help that my school doesn't weight honors classes).

    Like I said, my parents said I'll be fine, but I don't know. What do you all think? (sorry for it being so long :redface: )

    Thanks. :)
     
  2. mdsu

    mdsu Candidate

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    dude you dont have to worry.
     
  3. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Listen to your parents.
     
  4. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    Just out of curiosity...if you do choose to worry, what will it change? :rolleyes:
     
  5. armybratkl

    armybratkl Member

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    I think that's why I worry about it... I beat myself up for slacking with my grades previously, and now I can't do enough.
    I don't worry at all about the CFA, because I know I can "fix" "bad results." I can't "fix" my GPA.
    I guess I was just looking for some reassurement from other cadets/parents of cadets/etc. that, although it's lower than the average GPA, it will still be good enough.
     
  6. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Standing alone, your GPA is useless. It's just a number. Every school has a different way of calculating it.
    Admissions will make a complete evalutaion of your transcripts. They will look at the courses you took, the strength of those courses and the strength of your schedule. They will look at the highest Math course you have taken. Finally, they will also look at your class rank to show how well you are performing against your peer from the same school with the same opportunities.

    Chillax.
     
  7. goforwestpoint

    goforwestpoint Member

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    didn't you already get an LOA?
     
  8. armybratkl

    armybratkl Member

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    And I don't think I'm even in the top fifth -- that can't help me.

    No. Did I say I did?
     
  9. anonagron

    anonagron Member

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    You've got terrific test scores. Providing your leadership and physical abilities are above and beyond, (and I have no reason to believe that they are not), you have done about all you can do for the GPA up to this point.

    Another thing to keep in mind: WP knows the reputation of the schools in your state and in your region, and they are aware of the difficulty of your school system in relation to the top schools. Your grades and class rank or percentile may not be as big of an issue in a school system that has the reputation of being a top-notch institution. They can/may/will also take into consideration the service academy applicants who have gained admission in prior years and their success at the respective academies. Schools that have an established history of successful applicants allows admissions some wiggle room in the process of evaluating your file.

    These posters are right: don't sweat it. Don't even sweat not being in the top 20%. The ACT does a great job of predicting success in college and your scores are better than many who enter the academy. Just focus on doing your best your senior year, and find some time to enjoy yourself! :thumb:
     
  10. goforwestpoint

    goforwestpoint Member

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    sorry i thought you had..it must have been someone else.
     
  11. armybratkl

    armybratkl Member

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    Okay, thanks. I had always thought coming from a school with a lot of service academy applicants would be a disadvantage because of the extra competition. Thanks for that perspective. :)

    I do have a friend that got a LOA, though... maybe that's what you're thinking of.
     

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