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How I got into UPenn (Interview 4)


SAT: 1560 (800 Math, 760 Reading)

ACT: 36 (36 English, 36 Math, 36 Reading, 36 Science)

GPA: 3.96

Rank in Class: 5

Size of Class: 241

Ap's taken: Chemistry, Physics Mechanics, AB Calculus, BC Calculus, American History, World History, Statistics, Computer Science, French Language, English Language, English Literature, European History, Macroeconomics, Microeconomics.


  • I was my class treasurer from my freshman year until my senior year.

  • I was the captain of my school's lacrosse team during my junior and senior years.

  • I was the president of my schools STEM academy during my Sophomore and Junior years.

Personal Story

"Everything I have achieved in high school has been a result of my freshman biology teacher. I love her to death and am so glad that I was in her class in freshman year.

She was the one who helped me believe that I was special and that I could do anything; and I can attribute everything good in my life to her love and support. I wasn't too close with my parents and she was really the first adult I had who really cared about me and saw something special in me that no one ever had.

I was a weird kid as a freshman. I was liked by a lot of people, but I was still kind of a loner and liked doing my own thing. I walked to the beat of my own drum and just did things differently than most kids. I'm not sure why I did, but I just did.

Other teachers didn't like this, but Mrs. R loved this! She allowed me to truly flower and become more of myself and explore my independent nature more. On top of this, she also lavished a ton of attention on me and helped me truly stretch my mind and helped me realize just what I could do and who I could become.

Before I knew it, it was senior year and I was applying to colleges. I was thinking about going local, maybe applying to some state schools and staying fairly close by. But she told me that I was selling myself short and that I should apply for some of the Ivys.

Now I thought she was absolutely crazy! I was a good student, one of the top in my class, but this, I thought, was a stretch. Applying to the Ivy League was like drawing a lottery ticket, no one actually gets into those!

So I applied to Cornell in the fall, sort of dipping my toe in and lo and behold, I got in. That blew my mind and I though 'maybe she's a got a point.' So then I applied to Penn, Princeton and Columbia in the spring and somehow, I got into Penn and Columbia which was insane! It was absolutely insane!

I had no idea what I even had a chance here and the fact that she believed in me and I was able to prove her right is one of the greatest feelings I have ever had in my life."

Useful Advice

"I remember Mrs. R telling me this after I took the SAT the first time and didn't do that well. I came to her crying telling her that 'I couldn't do it' and that 'I'm not smart enough to do it' and all this other really negative stuff. I'll never forget this, she looked into my eyes and says 'you'll become what you believe. If you believe that you can, you will. If you believe that you can't, you won't.' My life changed that day and I have applied that philosophy to everything in my life since.

Something I would give as advice to anyone who wants to get into Penn is that they should surround themselves with people who inspire them and want them to be better than they are. If they do this, everything else will take care of itself."

University of Pennsylvania Undergraduate, Class of 2023

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