International Science Olympiads and qualifying competitions

IMOEvery year, high school students from around the world compete in international Olympiad competitions in math and science.  Each country select four to six students in each field: Biology, Chemistry, Informatics, Linguistics, Math and Physics etc.
The international Olympiads and qualifying competitions could enrich the science and math education of the high school students in the classroom and motivate them and take their skills to the level of international competition.

International Biology Olympiad (IBO)

The USA Biology Olympiad (USABO) is qualified through USABO. All the high school students, with US citizens or US permanent residents, are eligible to participate in the USABO upon nominated by their teachers. After two rounds of challenging exams, twenty Finalists are invited to a residential training program where they learn advanced biological concepts and exacting lab skills at Purdue University. Finally, four students  represent the USA at the International Biology Olympiad (IBO).

International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO)

The USA National Chemistry Olympiad is qualified through USNCO in three stage. The first stage is at the ACS local sections.  The local Chemistry Olympiad competitions are open to all high school students and ACS local sections choose nominees for the national competitions.  The second stage is the national chemistry Olympiad competition among the selected 1000 participates.  The top 20 scoring students are selected for a study camp to advance to the International Chemistry Olympiad.  The final four students will be selected after the two weeks study camp to represent US to the International chemistry Olympiad based on performances and tests of their chemistry knowledge and skills in a five-hour laboratory practical and five-hour written theoretical examination.

International Math Olympiad (IMO)

The United States Mathematical Olympiad ( USAMO) is qualified via the AMC.  The USAMO is a six question, two-day, 9h essay/proof examination.  About 270 of the top scoring AMC 12 participants (based on a weighted average) are invited to take the USAMO.  Approximately 230 of the top scoring AMC 10 participants (based on a weighted average) are invited to take the USAJMO.  U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents of US and Canada are eligible.

International Physics Olympiad (IPhO)

The US physics team is qualified via USPhO.  American Association of Physics Teachers (AAPT) is  responsible for the selecting and training of the team.  To begin with, 400 students are selected based on the scores of the January F=ma exam.

The semi-final exam is used as the basis for selection of the 20 members of the U.S. Physics Team.  The 20 students will then have ten days of intensive studying, testing and problem solving at the University of Maryland -College Park.  At the end of this training camp, five students will be selected for the “Traveling Team.” The Traveling Team will return for three additional days of intense laboratory work before they are ready for the International Event.

There is also International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI). The US team is  qualified via the USACO.

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Summer Programs useful for college applications

This is an attempt to identify the most useful summer programs that are helpful for your college application.   Most summer programs admit almost all students who are willing to pay the high tuition.  However, a number of competitive-admission summer programs select only the best students based on merit, and are subsidized or even free of charge.

Science & Research Programs

  • Minority Introduction to Engineering and Science (MITES)  is an intensive six-week residential academic enrichment program for high school juniors, especially for minority students, who intend to pursue careers in science, engineering and entrepreneurship. The program is free of charge to ca 80 selected participated students.  About 30 percent of all MITES graduates have matriculated at MIT and many go on to other prestigious colleges and universities including Harvard, Stanford, and Columbia.
  • Research Science Institute (RSI) brings together about 80 high school students each summer for six weeks at MIT. This rigorous academic program stresses advanced theory and research in mathematics, the sciences and engineering. Participants attend college-level classes taught by distinguished faculty members and complete hands-on research, which they often then use to enter science competitions. Open to high school juniors, the program is free of charge for those selected.
  • Women’s Technology Program (WTP) is a four-week summer academic and residential experience where 60 female high school students explore engineering through hands-on classes (taught by female MIT graduate students), labs, and team-based projects in the summer after their junior year. Students attend WTP in either Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) or Mechanical Engineering (ME).
  • Summer Science Program is a five-week residential program held at two campuses (one on the campus of Westmont College and one on New Mexico Tech) with 36 students on each campus.  The program is organized around a central project: to determine the orbit of a near-earth asteroid (minor planet) from direct astronomical observations.  In the program,  students can obtain hands-on experience with advanced topics in the physical sciences, mathematics, and computer science through a combination of lectures, guest speakers, field trips, and research work.  Financial aid is available.
  • Clark Scholar Program is an intensive seven week summer  program for highly qualified high school junior or seniors to do research with experienced faulty of Texas Tech university.  The Clark Scholar will receive $750 tax-free stipend in addition to room and board, fun activities, weekly seminar and trips.
  • Garcia Summer Scholars is an intensive seven week program for gifted high school students to design original research with a MRSEC faulty mentor. In the past, the students have consistently won recognition for their research through national competitions (LISEF,NYCSEFNYSSEFISEF), published in refereed journals, been awarded patents.

Math Program

  • Stanford University Mathematics Camp (SUMaC) is a four-week program for talents math students from across the United States and around the world.   This program includes an intensive course in higher mathematics and a guided research project related to the course.  Other activities include a series of lecture series,  group problem solving sessions,  social events and outings. The application deadline is March 14 and the tuition is $6000. however,  financial aid is available.

State Governor’s Schools

Each year, about 15-20 states offer Governor’s School programs. Each program has different focus such as academic, arts, or leadership.  The tuition fee is kept as low as possible since the programs are partially funded.  This is a highly competitive program to apply.

Did I miss something, put the one you like in the comments below!

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Regular decision notification dates class 2016

Waitlisted? read how to appeal

  • Allegheny College: April 1st
  • Amherst College: April 1st
  • American University: April 1st
  • Babson College: March 15th
  • Baldwin-Wallace College: rolling admission
  • Bard College: April 1st
  • Barnard College: Late March
  • Bates College: March 31st
  • Boston College: by April 15th
  • Boston University: online notification April 15th
  • Bowdoin College: Early April
  • Brandeis University: April 1st
  • Brooklyn College of the CUNY: early Feb
  • Brown University: March 29th after 5pm ET
  • Bryn Mawr College: April 1st
  • Bucknell University : mail by USPS March24th, online 3/28
  • California Institute of Technology: Mid March
  • Carleton College: April 1st
  • Carnegie Mellon University: March 15- April 15
  • Case Western Reserve University: March 20
  • Claremont McKenna College: April 1st (Online)
  • Clemson University: rolling
  • Colby College: April 1st
  • College of Charleston: Before April 1st,
  • Colgate University: April 1 (through mail)
  • College of New Jersey: before April 1st
  • Colorado College: March 20
  • Columbia University: late March or early April
  • Cornell University: March 29th
  • Dartmouth College: Early April
  • Davidson College: mailed  by April 1st
  • Denison University: Mid March
  • Dickinson College: March 20
  • Drew University:
  • Duke University: online notification “late March”
  • Elon University: March 15th
  • Emerson Colleg: April 1st
  • Emory University: April 1 via OPUS
  • Fairfield University: April 1st
  • Franklin w. Olin, College of Engineering
  • Georgetown University: April 1st (Mail)
  • George Washington: Late March/Early April
  • Georgia Institute of Technology – March 20th
  • Hamilton College: April 1st
  • Harvard University: March 29th after 5pm
  • Harvey Mudd: By April 1st
  • Haverford College: April 1st
  • Hobart & William Smith Colleges: April 1st
  • Holy Cross, College of: Early April
  • Howard University
  • Johns Hopkins: Notification by email “during the last days of March”
  • Kenyon: Before April 1st by Mail
  • Lafayette College: April 1st
  • Lehigh University
  • Lincoln University
  • Loyola College in Maryland: March 15th
  • Loyola Marymount University
  • Middlebury: Mailed Friday, March 25, 2011 – Available on-line on Saturday, March 31, 2012 at 8:00am EST
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology: 3/14  1:59 PM EST [Online MIT account]
  • Northwestern University: early April
  • Notre Dame : Mailed First week of April
  • NYU: April 1
  • Pomona College: April 5
  • Princeton University: March 30
  • Reed: decision mailed late March
  • Rice: April 1st
  • RPI: March 10th
  • St John College
  • Scripps:
  • Skidmore: late March
  • Smith College:
  • Stanford: April 1st
  • Swarthmore: April 1st
  • Syracuse University
  • Trinity (CT): “Early April”
  • Tufts University: April 1st (Online through TAMS portal)
  • Union college
  • University of California at Berkeley: March 29 (Online)
  • University of California at Irvine: coming out in batches since 2/1, through end of March
  • UCLA: “Mid to Late March” [2010: 3/12 6 PM online]
  • University of California at Riverside: coming out in batches since 2/1, through end of March
  • University of California at Santa Barbara : 3/21
  • University of California at San Francisco: March 15
  • University of California at San Diego: Mid-Late March
  • The University of Chicago: late March
  • University of Delware
  • University of Georgia: April 1
  • University of Massachusetts at Amherst: “mailing begins in early March”
  • University of Michigan: RD – rolling starting Feb 4
  • University of North Carolina: January 21 first deadline online; around April 1 second deadline
  • University of Pennsylvania: March 29th online
  • University of Pittsburgh: rolling
  • University of Richmond: RD April 1st
  • University of Southern California: BY April 1 (Snail-Mail not in waves)-March 23rd(2011)
  • University of Tennessee
  • University of Vermont
  • University of Virgina: April 1 (Online)
  • University of Wisconsin: Rolling, all RD results out by the end of March.
  • Vanderbilt University: April 1 (Mail)
  • Vassar College: “Around April 1″
  • Villanova University:Late March
  • Wake Forest University: ED rolling; RD April 1st
  • Washington University at St. Louis: decisions mailed April 1st
  • Wellesley College: Early Evaluation: February 22nd at 5pm EST
  • Wesleyan University:”By April 1″ (Online)
  • Wheaton College: April 1st
  • William & Mary: early April
  • Williams College: “By April 1st”
  • WPI: April 1st
  • Yale University: posted at ELI online account  by April 1st.
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Ivy league colleges regular decision notification dates-class 2016

For the regular decision notification of top colleges, read here.

Brown University: March 29 after 5pm ET

Columbia University: late March or early April online at columbia admissions

Cornell University: March 29th online after 5 pm ETat CUWeblogin

Dartmouth: Early April

Harvard University:

Regular decision emails will be sent out Thursday March 29th, 2012 after 5pm

You can call the admission office on March 30th if not receive the email.

University of Pennsylvania: March 29th, online notification

Princeton University: March 30th

Yale University: posted online at ELI account by April 1.

MIT and Stanford are not Ivy colleges but people usually put them along with ivy leagues:

MIT  March 14th 6.28PM ET online

Standford: April 1st online at axess

Waitlisted?  read how to appeal


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College application waitlisted, how to appeal

Realistically, it is not a good sign to be on waitlists since very few students on waitlists will be admitted.  Therefore, the first question to ask yourself is if the college is your top choice? if not, it might not worth your time and effort to appeal.

If you decide to appeal the decision, you should write to the admission office to reinstate your interest in going for the college as soon as possible. Maybe you should do more research to show exactly how the school is the best fit for you.

Next,  ask your guidance counselor if he or she could contact the admission office on your behalf and find out why your application was not accepted.  If she or he was not able to do this for you, then you need to contact to the admission office yourself.  If you have an email address of admission officers during your college visit, that is great.  Write to the person using that email.

Then send along any new and significant information that might make your application stronger. You can send out higher SAT scores you got later,  any significant extracurricular activities, or award certifications and your midyear school report.  You can also ask one of your favorite teachers to write a strong letter on your behalf.

If you feel you are overwhelming with the school during your senior year and the college on the waitlist is really your dream college, you could  pay one of the consulting firms to appeal for you.

Although it is rather disappointing to be waitlisted, certainly you still have some chance to be admitted, especially if you do it right when appealing.

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