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How to Get Into an Ivy League School

Getting into an ivy league school is something many students dream of. You can get good grades, take Advanced Placement classes, and participate in a motherload of extracurricular and community service activities, and still not get accepted. The college admissions process is challenging. How admissions departments and committees operate is even more elusive. Aside from the standard “do well in school” advice, there are other ways to boost your eligibility for admission to an ivy league college.

Connections Matter

It’s not a very well-kept secret that the more connections you have, the better. You may know someone that went to the school or a family member attended there. If not, you can meet the right people by visiting the campus and taking a tour. Take advantage of events in your high school or hometown where representatives from your favorite prospective college will be. Give them a reason to remember your name during the selection process.

Know How the School Evaluates Applications

The more you know how your application will be evaluated, the more you can prepare in advance. Strive for the test scores, essay quality, recommendations, and work/extracurricular resume the college is looking for. Still, the rubric and scoring given to specific parts of your application may be obscure. At least you can take a run at it.

Leave Out the Gimmicks

Including more in your application than asked for won’t improve your chances of acceptance. Follow all essay guidelines as well, rather than find eccentric ways to get their attention. This only gives admissions officers more work and wastes their time. They may decide to take your name off the list if this is the case.

Be Prepared to Pay

Many times, colleges and universities select students based on their bottom line. You may be better off not applying for financial aid so fast. A school may more readily admit someone who can pay the full tuition, rather than get by on loans or grants. That doesn’t, however, mean it only admits rich kids. The institution itself may be ready to provide the tradeoff of aid to select students.

Show Your Passion

Whether you want to go to Hofstra University or Harvard, admissions personnel are looking for people who will enroll if they accept them. Showing you are eager to attend the school can help. Universities are often looking for a high percentage of admitted students to enroll; therefore, expressing your passion for the institution is something to do. A master in cyber security may or may not be your ultimate goal. Still, getting into an ivy league school doesn’t mean going overboard; you can conquer an elusive emissions process by being connected and prepared, and by showing you’re exactly what the school needs.