By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer
High school seniors know that college acceptance (and sadly, rejection) letters are rolling out faster than they can straighten out the tassels on their graduation caps. It’s especially tough for aspiring scientists, who often compete against the cream of the crop. Nothing beats the feeling of winning a spot at a top tier university, but for 17-year-old Kwasi Enin, he got to live the excitement at least 8 times. Why? Because he was accepted into every single Ivy League school in the nation!
For those of you who don’t know, the Ivy League elite universities are Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Pennsylvania, Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, and Columbia. These institutions are particularly selective about the students they admit into their institutions, so the fact that Enin has a spot in all eight is a remarkable feat.
Given his track record in high school, it’s understandable why the universities would want Enin. He was ranked 11th out of all the students in his school and scored a 2250 out of 2400 on the SAT. However, it was more than his grades that got him so many acceptance letters. Enin was involved in a variety of extracurricular activities such as music, student government, theater, and volunteer services.
Why aren’t grades the only thing that matter for college admissions? Well, while grades are a great way to get noticed, they’re not the only determining factor. Plenty of students all across the nation have impressive academic records, especially in ultra-competitive science and technology categories like biology, mathematics, and engineering. The fact is, universities can’t admit every single one of the top GPAs and SATs, so in order to distinguish (tell apart) which students they want to educate and which ones don’t quite fit the bill, they focus on factors other than academics. That’s why there is a large focus on extracurricular activities. These activities give insight not only into how well young learners can manage their time, but also offer a snapshot of how engaged and curious they are about the world around them.
So, the fact that Enin got admitted into every Ivy League school is great, but the real take home lesson is this: good grades aren’t enough if you’re looking to get acceptance into top-tier universities. It’s also about the drive that young scholars have to experience all there is to learn outside of the classroom.
Image of Harvard courtesy of Joseph Williams on Wikimedia.