This time of year, most students would be thrilled to gain acceptance into their top-choice schools. Kwasi Enin, from Long Island, as many may have heard, gained acceptance into every single school he applied, including all eight Ivy League schools! This extraordinary feat is even more impressive in light of the steep decline in acceptance rates among these institutions in recent years.
Some would call Mr. Enin very lucky, and it would certainly be imprudent to discount the role of good-fortune in the college admissions process. However, it would be equally unwise to dismiss this feat as pure luck. In fact, if we were to consider college admissions as a random process, the chances of admission into every Ivy League School would be just 0.00000026%!
Clearly, Mr. Enin had an application that stood out to college admissions officers everywhere. What exactly made him so coveted by the nation’s most prestigious schools? Let’s take a look.
Colleges and Universities want to know that they will be admitting the “best and brightest,” who stand a good chance of succeeding in an academically rigorous environment. Accordingly, admissions counselors always look first and foremost at grades in school. Mr. Enin worked hard throughout high-school, and maintained a strong GPA, ranking 11th in his class of 647. In addition, school look for students who strive to challenge themselves in school (to the extent possible). Mr. Enin will have completed 11 A.P. classes by the time he graduates!
2) SAT Score:
An SAT score is, for better or worse, a crucial part of the college admissions process. A good score can validate your grades and confirm to admissions officers that you have the “intellectual horsepower” to succeed in an academic environment. Luckily, the SAT can be “beaten” with strong preparation and a good understanding of the test (something Reach-Higher specializes in!). Mr. Enin was fortunate enough to receive a 2250/2400 on his SAT.
3) Extracurricular Activities:
Many schools like well-rounded individuals who will not only contribute academically, but also socially and ethically as well. Therefore, admissions officers look for a breadth of activities and interests. Leadership is also an important component. Not surprisingly, Mr. Enin happens to be a musician who sings in the school’s a capella group and volunteers at Stony Brook University Hospital’s radiology department.
4) The Application:
Many view the application as a formality; it is not! In fact, some would call this the most important part. The application essay has to be insightful, interesting, and representative of the candidate. Many times, it is the only “direct” contact an admissions officer has with the student, meaning it’s the only chance they have to get to know their prospective students. Having a great story, vision, and set of goals is crucial. See Mr. Enin’s essay here.
Getting into the college of your dreams can be a tedious process, and rarely will it work out as spectacularly as it did with Mr. Enin. However, with the right preparation, guidance, and effort, it is possible to put yourself in a position to achieve success.