What Does It Take to Get Into an Ivy League School?

Eight Ivy League schools represent the epitome of educational achievement in the United States. The schools, ranked in no particular order, are Yale, Princeton, Penn, Harvard, Dartmouth, Cornell, Columbia, and Brown.

Their average acceptance rate is only 9%. The exclusivity of attending one of these institutions has some significant advantages. About one-quarter of the 400 wealthiest people in the United States attended one of these schools. 

How can you give yourself the best chance to get an acceptance letter?

How Do I Get Into an Ivy League School?

It would be best if you thought about differentiation. Over half of the accepted students at Harvard already have a 4.0 GPA, with similar figures found at the other institutions. Being elite in your school isn’t enough.

It would help if you thought about the other activities you have in your life. Does your work get printed regularly in national publications? Do you excel in other extra-curricular activities?

Getting into an Ivy League school requires you to be the best of the best. That means you need to be a changemaker on a global scale.

It helps to have a relative as an alumnus to an Ivy League school that can support your application.

You don’t need to be well-rounded to get into your preferred school. It may be necessary for some less selective institutions, but the Ivy League wants to see people with a strong performance in at least one (if not two or three) categories.

Why Isn’t My GPA Enough Today?

The average GPA for accepted students in the Ivy League institutions today is above 4.0. It’s as high as 4.19 at Cornell. Only Princeton and Yale are lower, and their average is 3.9.

Your SAT or ACT scores need to have a similar altitude to get attention. Yale’s average accepted score is 1580 and 35, respectively. Anything lower may send the application to the rejection pile.

Even with those attributes, an outstanding personal essay is necessary to get your application across the finish line. You must be personable, authentic, and unique. Get your paperwork in early to have the best chance.