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Getting Deferred from your Dream School- What Next?

Getting Deferred from your Dream School- What Next?

 

Getting Deferred from your Dream School- What Next?

Getting deferred can be disheartening but giving up on your dream school & abroad education plans is not a choice. With increasing competition in the early cycle of foreign admissions, getting deferred is no big deal, it is rather an opportunity to prove yourself better.

What is a Deferral – A Deferral means that your application will be reconsidered in the regular application pool and there are some steps you can take to improve your chances.

What do students get Deferred – The top reason is usually that the university wants to see your Mid-Year/Fall grades to see how you’re doing in your Senior Year in High School. Or they want to consider your application in the regular pool of applicants keeping in the mind their desired incoming class.

You should consult your foreign education counsellors who can help you understand the foreign education process better and guide you on the next steps but here are a few steps to take after getting deferred that can help you get a firm offer from your dream college.

  1. EDII decision: Please review your current list of priorities. Is there another college you are keen on applying EDII to? If so work on putting in a strong application to that college or try and convert an application already submitted into an EDII application by reaching out to them.
  1. Check what the college requires: Is it just an acceptance to be considered in the regular round on your college portal? Are they looking for better grades to be reported? Are they open to accepting an additional letter of recommendation? Are they interested in getting other updates on your extracurricular achievements?
  1. Extensive Research: The key to submitting a strong application for foreign education is researching more about the whole abroad admission process and finding the college representative who reviews your applications. Then, just get in touch with them, build a connection, show your commitment, and leave a good impression.
  1. A Letter to the Dean/Admissions Representative: Start working on writing a letter to the Dean of Admissions explaining how the school is a perfect fit for your abroad education plans. Reiterate the courses and research opportunities you wish to pursue. Most importantly, talk about the things you have accomplished since the time you submitted your application. Keep the tone positive.
  2. Prove Yourself: Submit your Mid-year grades showing better grades since the submission of your original application in November. You can also talk about any other achievements/awards both within and outside the classroom.
  3. Follow-up: Send another e-mail in February different from the letter you sent earlier to remind the admissions representative about your passion to get admission into that school.
  1. Keep Your Options Open: Never forget about your dream of pursuing your education abroad, in the race to get into your dream school, and continue pursuing the other second or third-choice schools from your list.
  2. Don’t Give Up: It might be difficult to predict your chances of getting into your dream school but giving up should never be an option. Seek help from professional foreign education consultants and keep trying because there’s still a lot you can do even after getting deferred.

My First SAT Exam Score – How to Deal with It

The SAT score undoubtedly plays a significant role in getting into the top colleges in the US. So, feeling anxious about the score and the entire foreign education admission process is normal. Not getting expected results could lead to self-doubt but it’s important to note here that acing the SAT exam on the first attempt is almost impossible. So, just breathe in and understand why you need not worry about your first SAT score and what’s the right way to deal with your US admission process.

  1. Patience is the Key: Starting from US applications, your education abroad plan could be highly challenging and the best way to deal with it is by being patient. The SAT exam covers advanced concepts that most students have not studied at school thus, keeping high expectations could lead to disappointment. The key is to be patient and gradually perform better.
  1. Plan Your Tests: The right way to boost your US admission process is by either preparing for your next test with an experienced tutor or getting an SAT prep book to build test strategies like skipping a question and making educated guesses.
  1. Seek Advice: Seek help from the best counsellors for foreign education in your city and get rid of all the stress and anxiety. You can also strategically plan your US admission process using the expert advice of your US admission consultant.
  2. Test-Flexible Colleges to the Rescue: Though it only takes two to three attempts to achieve your desired SAT score, there are still many schools that offer Score Choice, where you can choose the scores to be sent to a college. Besides this, you still have more than 800 test-optional and test-flexible colleges in the US to choose from.
  3. Super Score: Take advantage of the Super Score and send your best composite score for college applications. Many US Colleges super score the SAT and use the best section-level scores even if they were from different tests. Although there are a lot of colleges that would super score your SATs, it is always better to review the score use policy for each college in advance.
  4. Take it Easy: Finally, do remember that it was your first try, which means you are now more familiar with the test and it’s easier to strategize your preparation. Using your knowledge of the US admission process, test pattern and support of your foreign education counsellor, it’s time to go for it. Just stop being hard on yourself, keep going and we promise that you’ll get through this.

Summer Programs In America

What are summer programs?

Summer programs are sessions meant to extend opportunities to the students to enhance their English language skills, learn about the cultural milieu of the USA, exchange ideas with the students across the world, and visit different parts of the country. These programs are available in various study areas ranging from liberal arts and sciences to Mathematics, Journalism, and even athletics. Most of the US summer programs come about between May to August for a total duration of about two to twelve weeks, depending upon the dynamics of the course. These cost-effective programs are great to whet one’s academic skills and subject knowledge, and fulfilling one’s aspirations. They are also known as Pre-college programs as they familiarize students with college-level courses before they enroll themselves in a full-fledged undergraduate program in a university.

 

Benefits of availing of summer programs

There are several expected benefits of joining a summer program, some of which are:

  1. Enhances your academic skills by allowing you to delve deeper into the subject matter of one or two subjects of your choice. This is particularly beneficial for the students who intend to show their dedication towards a subject and their academic profile for a positive impression on the admission officials.
  2. Not only does it allow you to highlight your academic vigor but also a chance to explore your interests. If you are interested in learning music or artistry, there are summer schools that offer lessons in Piano or drums. Similarly, if you are interested in gauging your competitive skills in sports such as tennis, you can enroll yourself in a sports camp.
  3. The most obvious benefit of availing of a summer program during high school is that it increases your chance to get into a college. Attending the right summer school program will expand your horizon, equip you with the essential skills and help you get ahead with a quick course. With admissions at the top colleges in the USA getting more competitive each year, they act as a feather on the cap and help build a nice resume and boost your college application.
  4. These provide a chance to earn academic credits that can be applied to your degree. Thus, it reduces the time and cost of your undergraduate degree. Along with this, it gives you a chance to take on new challenges and learn how to deal with them.

 

List of top summer schools in the USA: 

 

Whether it is to develop your artistic skills or academic understanding, the choice of the course and the university plays a significant role in generating the desired impact. The best summer schools in the USA are also the most competitive ones. These involve a preference for Brown University which provide five summer programs to choose from, for upper-level high school students.

Another major preferred choice is the Massachusetts Institute of Technology which provides four selective summer programs, namely- Research Science Institution, Women’s Technology Program, MIT Launch, and The Summer Science Program for the students to choose from. The University of Michigan also holds down a place for itself with an array of summer programs ranging from engineering, and computer programming to Great Lakes exploration, girls code camp to architecture, urban planning, etc.

Northwestern University has a growing popularity for a variety of its short intensive programs as well as the long summer term courses for college credits. The duration of these programs varies from three to eight weeks.

With approximately 1200 students applying for summer programs, Stanford University remains highly preferred for its scope to enroll oneself in up to five courses with subject areas ranging from arts and humanities, business, and legal studies, to writing mathematics, social science, physical and biological science, etc.

The prestigious Harvard University offers two options for the students. The first is a two-week non-credit experience meant for high schoolers to experience living in the dormitory, attending team-building activities, and attending classes three-hour per day. This is called Pre-college Program. While the other is a seven-week program for college credit that requires full immersion

John Hopkins offers The Discovery Hopkins Program meant to provide multiple perspectives on a topic to high-school students. It runs alongside the two-week Summer University program. The university also offers two specialized programs to choose from namely, ESL programs to enhance students’ English skills and test scores and the Engineering Innovation Program for the students who are interested in Science, Engineering, and Mathematics.

The University of Chicago is also considered a great study option as it allows the students to choose from five High School Programs, namely- UChicago Immersion, Research in the Biological Sciences, Stones and Bones, Travelling Academy, and UChicago Arts and Sciences Summer. These programs are mostly three to four-week-long and offer to learn through seminars and first-hand experiences.

 

While the most popular summer programs include courses on enhancing English as a second language or familiarizing oneself with different aspects of American culture, equally popular among the students are courses meant to supplement their knowledge in a particular discipline.

 

In a nutshell, attending a summer program in the US is an experience that will not only add to your academic profile but would also enhance your personality, thus aiming for holistic development.

 

The Next Frontier in Technology- Artificial Intelligence

When Dan Brown wrote Origin, he wasn’t so much predicting at the future as documenting the present. Google, Alexa, and Siri are today a part of our lives and we all use them without batting an eyelid. Two decades ago, suggesting that something like would be an essential part of our lives may have seemed ludicrous, but we all know that the day is not far when machines will rule our world. From medical science to the military and from offices to elderly care, we are already beginning to depend heavily on AI. That as a tech geek you should want to be a part of this revolution sweeping the globe is not surprising. Indeed several universities and colleges have revamped their CS departments to include courses in AI.

If you aspire to make a future in this ‘futuristic’ arena, you are sure to have several pressing questions you would like answered:

  1. Where can I study AI?
  2. What courses should I be taking?
  3. What are my options after graduating from college? Where will I find a lucrative job?

In this article, we will try to answer these questions for you.

Which colleges can I apply to?

 The short answer is: many! From Carnegie Mellon, which was among the first to start a course in AI to MIT, you are spoiled for choice. Carnegie Mellon tops the list of colleges with its groundbreaking and interdisciplinary course, followed closely by Stanford where this area has been studied and researched since 1962! MIT gives a lot of money and attention to its AI division and their Computer Science and AI Lab is among the best labs in the college. University of California, Berkeley has a robust AI department as does Harvard that also boasts an AI research center. Yale, Cornell, University of Maryland, Columbia, University of California LA, and Georgia Tech are some other incredible options. With significant research opportunities, large and accomplished faculty and increasing student strength, these are among your go-to options.

Which courses can I take?

While there is no dearth of options – from short-term certificate courses available of Coursera and similar platforms to degree programs, we would recommend aiming for the top guns. While it is impossible to list all the courses and programs available, we would like to draw your attention to a few that are top of the list. Carnegie Mellon’s BS in AI is among the Big Boss of majors you can apply for. Cornell’s Computer Science department offers numerous courses that can be of interest to you: Data Science for All, Autonomous Mobile Robots, Foundations of AI, Practicum in AI, Social and Ethical issues in AI (which we believe is a very relevant and essential component of this field), and Machine Learning for Data Science. USC Vertibi provides excellent undergrad research opportunities in Robotics and Autonomous Systems and among several other things they focus on niche areas such as healthcare, environmental monitoring, and machine learning and algorithms for control of humanoids. We recommend deep and thorough research before you take your pick.

Where can I work? And as what?

While the simple response to this is: the tech sector, obviously, there is actually an increasing demand for people who know their bots from their apps. According to job hunt sites such as Indeed, the positions open to you include machine learning engineers, data scientists, algorithm developers, deep learning engineers, and computer vision engineers among others. Job opportunities lie in companies as varied as Facebook and OCBC legal and compliance, according to another job hunt site Glassdoor. As always, the Bay Area remains among the top destination for job seekers with not only big established names but also a host of start-ups on the lookout for young engineers well versed in AI and machine learning. Among the highest-paid of these jobs are those of big data engineers, data scientists, data architects, information systems security managers, and data security analysts.

Colleges in Asia: Hong Kong or Singapore?

Whether it’s the fact that Asia has the fastest growing economies or the opportunity to get world-class education that’s not a transatlantic flight away, college in Asia is an amazing opportunity for countless students every year. So let’s talk about two of the hotspots – Hong Kong and Singapore.

SIMILARITIES

Language: Like India, both Hong Kong and Singapore are former British colonies, and like India, you can get around by speaking English in nearly all circumstances.

Location and Safety: Both places have a modern city landscape and easy transport access. And moreover are pretty safe places to live. Singapore has a reputation for safety and security in particular.

Job Prospects: Different companies are headquartered in Hong Kong and Singapore, making job prospects after graduation much easier than the US or UK. But even if you aren’t planning to stay in the country, the degrees are internationally recognized and appreciated. Hong Kong and Singaporean universities are research-based and have rigorous education systems which bodes well no matter the country you end up in after graduation.

Flexibility of Curriculum: Rather like India or the UK, there is limited flexibility in the curriculum which means if you apply for a specific major, you need to do that major. The only exception to this is Yale-NUS which is modelled after the US education system (including the admissions requirement) and thus offers you a lot more flexibility.

Standardized Tests: Both Singapore and Hong Kong definitely require TOEFL or IELTS to prove proficiency in English (though there are exceptions for IB students) but when it comes to standardized tests, exams like the SAT or ACT are not required for admission, but if you have good scores send them in! They are internationally recognized exams. Again the exception is Yale-NUS.

DIFFERENCES (Largely in terms of Admissions Requirements)

Essay vs. SOP: HKU, HKUST and City University of HK all need an SOP or statement of purpose highlighting your chosen major and why you would like to do that major. As the name suggestions, this is a document conveying your purpose of applying to the college. The students need to keep their focus narrow and describe their reason for applying, their intended major or concentration, long term and short term goals and connect any coursework or extracurricular activities related to the major specifically.

Singapore on the other hand has essays, which are short (approx 300 words) and specify prompts. Yale-NUS too has essays though they are longer than those for NUS or SMU since Yale-NUS is based on the US admissions system and which requires multiple essays on a range of topics.

Grade Requirements: Because the universities haven’t seen the intense competition that Singaporean universities have their cutoffs or ideal grades are a little lower, right around 85% in the ICSE and CBSE board exams as of 2018 though each year gets more competitive. Singaporean universities are much more competitive hoping to see grades around 90-95% usually with the cutoff getting higher and higher each year.

Cost of Education: While the cost of education for international students are usually the same for both countries, Singapore offers bonds for students which are tied to a minimum time employed in Singapore or at a Singapore based company. With internationalisation efforts made by the Hong Kong government and universities, there are generous scholarships available based on merit or international accomplishments.

We can attest that, as in other Asian institutions, studying in a university in Hong Kong or Singapore is very rigorous and we have seen that with our students. But even though its tough, it is worth it. You walk away with a world-class education, an unforgettable experience and life adventure.