How To Get Into an Ivy League School | What NOBODY Is Saying (2019)
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How To Get Into an Ivy League School | What NOBODY Is Saying (2019)

Hey guys, Gmanlyfe here. In this video, I’m going to teach you how
to get into an Ivy League school, or basically any other school that you want to go to. I discovered this crucial information halfway
through sophomore year. And without it, I don’t think I would’ve been
accepted to my dream school, Princeton. Now, if you’re at all like me, you’ve spent
hours on the College Confidential forum, watching YouTube videos like this one, and spamming
your college guidance counselors, teachers, and parents with questions about college admissions
and things like that. I wasted so much time researching this stuff
when I could’ve been reading, hanging out with friends, or catching up on House of Cards. And I don’t want you to make the same mistake. So, I’ve decided to compile all of the most
valuable information that I’ve learned about the college admissions process into this one
video. So if I were you, I would get out a pen and
a piece of paper, because if all goes to plan, you can go back to watching Netflix after
this, instead of going on this “ghost hunt” for the secret formula to Ivy League admissions. Now, let’s get a few things straight. I’m an upper-middle class guy with no legacy
connections, no under-represented minority status, and no compelling life story. I’m not a recruited athlete, and I haven’t
won any national awards. I see a lot of YouTubers who offer advice
on how to get into ivy league schools, but it seems that they often fall into one of
these categories and admission is simply not as easy when you don’t fall into any of those. So, if you’re in the same boat as me, you’re
going to want to keep watching, because I’m going to offer advice that is useful to you
as well. Allow me to explain how I got in. This year, there were 31,056 people who applied
to Princeton. Of those, 12,435 had a perfect GPA, and 13,800
of them had a 1400 or above on the SAT. That means that roughly 45% of Princeton’s
applicant pool was completely qualified to get in. Yet, only 6.1% got the golden ticket. Just an aside here. If you’d like to see how to maintain a really
high GPA without really having to work too hard, head over to my last video, how to get
a 4.0, I’ll link it right here. Ok, back to what I was saying. So, if 45% of people are qualified to get
in, but only 6% do, how do admissions officers determine which 14% of awesome applicants
to let in, and which 86% to reject? I bet I know what you think I’m going to say. “Do as many extracurriculars as you can, sign
up for all of that volunteer work, you know you can do it.” And honestly, I can’t blame you. I’m sure that’s the advice your guidance counselors,
parents, younger sisters, and goldfish have been telling you all this time. You’re told to write for the school newspaper,
pursue an internship at the local animal shelter, and run your school’s bonsai tree planting
club all at once. But guess what? Colleges don’t care how many random activities
you can slap on your application. Confused? Let me explain. When going through their applicant pools,
admissions officers at top colleges don’t really look for well-rounded students; they
look more for a well-rounded class. That means x-many jazz musicians, x-many lacrosse
players, x-many public speakers, you get it. All else equal, the kid with one or two passions
that they’ve dedicated most of their time to will get in 100% of the time over the kid
that does seven random clubs. Don’t panic if you’re one of those students
that’s already doing a bunch of random extracurricular activities just to pad your application. I was doing the same thing as a sophomore–
I mean, it wasn’t even until the spring of my sophomore year that I realized I was doing
this all wrong. Here’s how I changed my ways, and got into
my top choice college. So, during my sophomore year, I was involved
in a bunch of activities. I was involved in theatre, my school’s a capella
group, mock trial, track, *varsity track*, I was volunteering in a soup kitchen, I was
part of China club, and I was studying both Spanish and Chinese. So once I realized that doing a bunch of random
things wasn’t going to help me for college, I wrote down all of my extracurriculars on
a piece of paper and tried to divide them into two distinct passions. The two that I came up with were performance
and study of Chinese culture. Though Mock Trial didn’t really fit under
live performance, I explained it in my college application as another context in which I
could improve my improv skills and my acting skills. Now, this is the most important part. I completely dropped track and I stopped volunteering
at the soup kitchen. I stopped doing these activities because a)
I realized that they were taking up my time when there was other more productive stuff
I could be doing during that time and b) they weren’t really going to get me anywhere in
terms of college because colleges can see right through you padding your application. I dropped track junior year and instead became
more heavily involved in theatre, and I even joined the school’s theater board. Instead of volunteering at the soup kitchen,
I actually started my own community service club at my school, where student musicians
could go out to our local city and perform on the street to raise awareness and funds
for a local charity that promotes music education amongst inner-city kids. I dropped Spanish and focused fully on my
study of Mandarin Chinese. With the help of my Mandarin teacher, I was
able to study abroad in China for a month. I also participated in a bunch of non-native
Chinese speaking competitions simply because I could. Although I didn’t really win any, they were
experiences I could talk about in my essay and I learned a lot about Chinese culture
through that. In the summer after junior year, I got an
internship at a translation and globalization company with a lot of clients in China, and
I was able to talk about that in my essays as well. I hope you’re seeing where I’m going with
this. You have to take an honest look at what you’re
doing and how you’re spending your time, and then cut down certain things, so you’re only
focusing on one or two specific areas. Because I took the time to do that, the admissions
officer who was reading my application didn’t just see a kid with great scores that was
signing up for a bunch of clubs simply to get into x, y, or z school. What they saw was a student who had multiple
interests and was willing to pursue them at a very deep level. Now, your passions don’t have to be the same
as mine, in fact, they shouldn’t be! It’ll be easiest for you if you come up with
one or two things that you actually really do enjoy. And brainstorm extracurricular activities
based on those interests. For example, my younger sister, who is currently
a freshman, is running an Instagram page currently with 40,000 followers. What I told her to do was approach the tech
department at our school and ask if she could help out with running their social media. And they accepted! Also, if she wanted to do some community service,
she could volunteer to advertise local charity events through social media. Literally anything can be a passion– you
just have to be creative. I honestly hope that this video has been helpful
to you. I know that knowing this really determined
a lot of my college decisions. Please keep in mind that I gave you all this
content for free and all I ask is that if you liked the video, hit me with a thumbs
up and subscribe. Also, if you have any specific questions about
your situation, just let me know in the comments, I usually get back to you within 24 hours. Lastly, I did set up a Patreon, so if you
would like to support me financially, any money I get will go right back into the channel
and increasing the production quality of my videos– that would be much appreciated as
well. The link is right below. Best of luck in the college admissions process,
and I’ll see you next week! Bye.

About James Carlton

Read All Posts By James Carlton

100 thoughts on “How To Get Into an Ivy League School | What NOBODY Is Saying (2019)

  1. Join my email newsletter NOW to receive my COMPLETE 8-page college admissions checklist and get sneak peaks of my future videos:

  2. I’m currently a freshman. I do Speech and Debate, Marching Band, and Boy Scouts. I have no clue what to say would a passion be for that. I wanna get into Penn and I’m looking to go into law.

  3. So, your focuses (like Chinese culture and the other), are those what you're studying at Princeton? What I'm asking is, do your focuses have to be related to your degree or career path?

  4. Thank you for the advice, as a Brazilian student in 8 grade with the dream of entering in the ivy leagues like Stanford and Harvard, this video helped me figured that I shouldn't do too many things and instead focus on things I like, for example, piano, Chinese culture, and tennis, so thanks for showing me

  5. Thanks for the advice! I mostly like to do art and wanted to start training to do more science stuff so I can possibly to architect or engineering when I grow up.

  6. In my country we don't have multiple choice tests we only get questions that we have to answer in detail and if we don't write a sentence in a perfect way with the exact words needed we get a zero. we get graded out of 20 and if we don't get at least 17 we are seen as not excellent and our lessons are so long and complicated and are forced to remember them by heart … We also go to school everyday for 8 hours and don't have extracurriculars or clubs or sport teams… i think it's so unfair that students in usa get A's easily and are seen as rlly smart when in reality it's not as hard and get more chances for being in clubs and teams while we don't have a choice or the time

  7. My family is like lower middle class however none of that applies to me because my parents castrated me. Cut me off. So I consider myself lower class .. anyway I didn't get a chance to go to an ivy league but I want my children to go to one.. so I'm trying to do research for them..

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  10. this dude
    rubbin in my face that he's smart, i get it. i saw a lot of comments from Harvard students and lemme tell u somethin. YOU'RE GUCCI Harvard is like my DREAM school.

  11. see the thing is, i dont really know what i wanna do. i really want to major in neuroscience and i play basketball. so i guess i should write that (basketball) in the future?

  12. I just made a super short 1 minute video on my channel about my stats that got me into the Ivy League, (Brown & Dartmouth)! If the video gets enough likes I’ll make another one that goes into more depth, including Extra Curriculars, more data about scores, and my advice on the college process! Go check it out!

  13. COLLEGE IS A SCAM! Unless you got a serious scholarship, want to work in STEM or law, DO NOT GO!

    I don't want to waste your time but SERIOUSLY do some research before you decide college is your only choice! It doesn't matter what your parents say, it isn't their life, it's yours. Colleges are a business; they have an extreme monopoly over us by abusing lobbying groups to allow themselves to be tax-exempt from EVERYTHING and bank off recent traditions telling us that we won't succeed without college. Please do some research! Harvard has an economy almost identical to the country of Bolivia just because we think we need a fancy name on our resume. This industry exceeds partisan boundaries and is in almost complete control of greedy politicians and the rest of our lives. The young people of today need smart people to take down these tyrants who destroy our lives.

    If you want to change this in the future: Funnel money into (or create) trustworthy media campaigns to expose colleges, expose student debt, expose the lobbying that allows these colleges to be tax free, literally hold political candidates accountable for promising to destroy laws like the IRS Internal Revenue code 501(c)(3), go to high schools and hold talks about this very topic, provide alternatives like trade schools, military, community college, expose college boards and deans! EXPOSE THIS!

  14. Useful. Wish I'd known this sooner. I did not, but you have earned your "like" and thank you for sharing the honest truth with people – many of whom will hopefully run across this sooner in their life than I did!

  15. Thanks! That was big advice. I would like to know more about how to get in if you're an international student…

  16. Key to getting into the IVY LEAGUE: 1. have a parent who went to that school. Have a parent that donates GENEROUSLY to that school. 2. Overachieve before gaining admission. 3. Have a high GPA. 4. Be ready to spend a ton on money  with the expectation what you will donate a ton more after you graduate. 5. being white helps the whole experience.

  17. I’m a rising senior and just panicking that I don’t have this…… if only I knew literally just two years ago. I didn’t have to do DECA model un marching band jazz band ceramics club mock trial etc. (those are all the things I kinda stopped doing cause there are other stuff I actually should’ve focused on. I should’ve just got an economics/finance internship.

  18. I am an engineering student who plans to pursue MBA from Columbia University. Can pursuing coursera courses related to finance increase my chances to get admission? What I really mean to ask is, does online certificate courses from universities like Stanford, Yale are benificial?

  19. I am a straight a student I am in wrestling volleyball and student council and band and I raised money for a non profit organization called capes for hero’s that makes capes for kids in the hospital. I also raised money for Alzheimer’s and brain awareness month and donated funds to Alzheimer’s association I also got representatives from Alzheimer’s association to come to my school. I am middle class.Do you think Ivy League schools would give me a chance?

  20. I maybe in grade 8, but already have a university list going, I want to be an Astrophysicist! This helped a lot, thanks!

  21. This is by far the best tip for anyone wanting to get into a ivy league school. I only had three cords and yet was the only one in my school who got into an ivy league school. Mean while others in my class who applied had over 30 cords, the same GPA and ACT and didn't even get wait listed!

  22. I have passions but idk how to implement them into something helpful: I like science and med stuff but am not a full fledged genius that has taken all science classes so I cud win in national Olympiad or prestigious research competitions, but that stuff is still my passion?! I like programming but I've only recently gotten into it, all my passions were realized this sophomore year of summer, I'm gonna be a junior soon, so I didn't have time to take the extracurriculars that matched my passions and do them. Idk how this will affect the chances, I'm starting those extracurriculars my upcoming year but sadly there isn't any med related club tbh I do have an idea for community service that cud be fun and creative but overall I'm not sure if I can even get in, my weighted gpa is a 4.0 and I'm trying to raise it. Any advice for clubs I can start or join any existing ones or anything else I cud do? Sorry this was so long oof

  23. Me and my 4.1 weighted GPA that consists of 60% arts classes and 1070 SAT score trying to get into the University of Miami: wtf am I doing

  24. This guy looks exactly like some guy from Disney channel or something……it’s bugging me but he resembles someone famous don’t know who :/ anyone else? Lol

  25. One of my big passions is traveling to Sport/Music events from the same brand for almost a decade now, would I be able to include this in my applicaiton?

  26. Hey, thank you so much for your advice, although I'd like to ask for some more. I just finished softmore with straight A's. I plan on taking more AP classes as well and prepping for the SAT. As for extracurriculars, I run an art class for seniors with disabilities weekly for a few hours. (I love art and so do it on my own as well.) I also do Peruvian cultural dancing and am part of a cultural house and program. Recently, I became part of the board for said culture organization. Adding onto this, I am part of Sea Cadets and have a leadership role there, connecting to me being part of a robotics team that nationally competes. (I've used Sea Cadets to access medical programs and STEM programs.) With all these apparently random activities, could I group them into the passions for art and its connection to culture and also science/technology. How else could I better my chances?

  27. I'm from a little known country in South America named Guyana and unfortunately we do not have the vast options of activities you have. I would like some help in determining whether or not my activities (which are a few) can been focused on more intensely to assist in my college application. Thank you in advance for the forthcoming help.

  28. Is ‘uniting world culture’ a passion Greg Smith?
    Also what extracurriculars would fit this?
    Also could you do a interview with other Princeton students as to what got them in, especially UK students. Love your videos very informative.

  29. I hope I am not the only one who realize this but this dude has a video that is uploaded titled " why you shouldn't apply to an Ivy League school. Now, he has a video of " how to get into a Ivy League school" can someone please explain that to me or I am just exaggerating.

  30. well, this video explained how I got into my university without really doing anything. I was only focused on computer science and my school had almost no computing options. By just taking the classes I was doing all they wanted.

  31. I am a Morrocan student. When I saw this video I really got confused because I don't do activities, I still don't know the application process very well.
    And I want to get into an Ivy League.
    Help anyone!!

  32. Is 3 too much? I play baseball and I literally would die if I quit, and I also run indoor track, so you could say sports is one, but I'm also in marching band and tech on theatre and I'm into photography, thinking about starting a club. But what I really want is to open a branch of something like rotary international at my school. Would that be too much?

  33. Hii iam from a backward area . In this area people and parents cannot support any students to do study in abroad so can u help me in any kind of thing that help me to make my profile for collages like you can help me in any program or entered me in any clubs i just really mean to say i have nothing to do from my place so can u help me to from your place

  34. Why even care if it's so selective, their obviously not looking for the best, their looking for the most suitable.

  35. nowadays have a left wing political family name. they will say its a chance of 1 in a million you get accepted. one of luckiest families must be the Gores. The ex VP beat the 1 in a trillion odds by having 4 children get into Harvard. Dont worry it was all above board and they all made it on their merit right?????????? THE SYSTEM IS RIGGED

  36. I think I’m in trouble because I like all the activities that I do a lot. For reference my freshmen year I was elected by the end of the year as President of the Finance & Entrepreneurship Club, Treasurer of Mock Trial, and Secretary of Science Olympiad. My Sophomore year I was elected as President of Finance, President of Habitat for Humanity, Captain of Science Olympiad, and Treasurer of Student Council (which sounds like padding but I ran because Science Olympiad gets over 50% of its funding from them and I had raised the funds for scioly as a member of student council prior. I didn’t run for Mock Trial President because I had too many AP’s even though I love the club and competition, I still hope to be active as a member and I have been told I will be captain my senior year if I want it by the advisor (not sure if it’s a good idea because it may look like I’m padding to hard and really I just enjoy public speaking and the competition element of mock trial) (also my mock trial club practices in a local ivy league law school’s court). I don’t know how I’m going to make this look concise because in truth I’m interested in a lot of different things and want to continue doing them all. I’m now headed into my junior year and I think I want to double major with something related to biomedical engineering/biostatistics and finance/applied economics because currently I invest in mid cap biotech companies undergoing clinical testing for breakthrough treatments in the phased III or phase IV stages, and eventually want to start a biotech focused hedge fund after college. That’s how I would explain my mess but I don’t know how to say that to college admissions. Any advice you could give on my extra curricular or how to sell it to college admissions would be so greatly appreciated.

  37. More people need to see this. I am not saying they will get into Harvard, but it has good ole American spirit. I hate it when people loose themselves just to have a chance to bang Harvard. It makes me sick. Maybe if I did go there I would understand this behaviour….

  38. I have a lot of extra curricular activities that aren’t all that except that I started a podcast near the end of my junior year, I’ve been wanting to start a youth group at my church but haven’t been able to except when I come back to the USA. this is very stressful bc I’m only now realizing about to start my senior yr that I should’ve just focused on one thing😭😭 I also could relate on the track part smh

  39. Frick, I like building computers, playing guitar, and working in the video world also an president of American politics club at my school. I actually liking doing all that stuff though lol

  40. Hey thanks for the advice
    I'm sooo interested into studying overseas after grade 12 and I don't know what steps I could take

  41. Woww. This is pretty useful! I'm an uprising senior now. While writing my college applications, your video helps me find a focus. 太感谢了!!

  42. What would you do for becoming a lawyer at Harvard? What extras/charity work should I do for a passion in law? I also have straight A's, good test scores, and run track and varsity cross country.

  43. 4.3 GPA and 28 ACT here. My School didn’t offer AP classes but it was huge on community involvement. I was one of those kids who did a bunch of random things and none of them really paid off. It was all for the sake of college applications. I’m on a tuition scholarship to one of the bigger schools in Alabama but I’m confident I could’ve gotten into an Ivy League School if I had applied myself and seen this video earlier.

  44. Quick Question: I'm an American citizen living in Saudi Arabia. I am the founder and president of the first UNICEF Club in Saudi Arabia and since I'm a rising junior, I also plan to become more involved with Debate club and their competitions as I have a passion for public speaking. However, because I live abroad, the same amount of opportunities aren't available to me. What do you think I could do to show that I'm still a very dedicated leader-type student? For example, I love fashion and streetwear so I was thinking of starting a blog. I also write poetry so I have submitted them to a few online literary journals.

  45. Hey Greg! I’m Michelle, a junior high school student who wants to go to Columbia university and major in finance 🙂 I’m having some troubles on deciding my electives, Advanced art or Spanish 4. I like art but I don’t want to take AP Art History in senior year. I have years of experiences in both art and Spanish. Can you give me some feedback? Also do you think Ivy League schools would require students to take AP language courses like Spanish during high school or college? Please let me know, thanks 🙏

  46. Need to send you an urgent email. My name is Dr Rahul Kamat and my son Rudra is applying to Princeton for theoretical physics. Have a specific query which I would prefer to send by mail.

  47. is it even possible for the international studdents to apply for financial aid and get into top colleges? could you please say me the dos and donts for those international students applying for financial aid!

  48. I know this video is old and I hope you see this…. I’m in a vocational technical high school and we only have 1 honors course which is English and no ap…. though I can take dual enrollment classes my senior year…. would I even qualify to apply to top schools or would it be even hard to get in…. can I have advice?

  49. Guys I am so confused 😐 i really want know what is different between college and university and if I want be firefighter 👩‍🚒 where should I go first after high school college or university and I don’t even know how it work if please someone can tell me, that will mean the world 🌎 for me I would be so thankful. I want know where should I go first and why 😭. I am sorry for being stupid 😔

  50. He’s good looking and smart?!Where have you been all my life? Mind you I’m only 3 seconds in writing this.

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