10 Things To Do Before Entering Ivy League

Ivy League

Ivy League universities: 8 private schools known for their rigorous coursework, academic excellence, selective admissions, and production of highly successful scholars. These 8 universities include: Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, Pennsylvania, and Yale. For many, it is the dream to get into one of these schools, but doing so is very difficult; one must stand out through their application as the competition is very meticulous – which is seen through the acceptance rates ranging from 3.59% to 9.73%. Here are some factors one needs to keep in mind before entering an Ivy League University.

10 Things to before Ivy League

Academic Performance

Academic performance is a minimal quality that is needed in order to make it into an Ivy League University. The courses you take, your grade point average (GPA), and class rank all contribute to this category. In regards to GPA, you will need an average of about 3.9 to 4.0 (unweighted), conveying the achievement of mostly all As. Class ranking is also similar as it conveys academic pursuit and excellence as well as assisting towards automatic admissions and scholarships.  Honors, AP, dual credit, and IB courses will help profusely as they show that one has taken, done well, and is ready for the rigorous coursework and pressure typically presented at the universities’ level. 

Standardized Test

Standardized tests – such as the PSAT, SAT, and ACT – act as entrance exams to determine whether you are eligible to join such a prestigious and diligent school. Although taking these tests are optional, most do so in order to test their knowledge and add a leading factor for the need of their acceptance through obtaining a good score. Not only will the acquisition of a good score build one’s college resume, but it also contributes towards receiving scholarships. 

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Extracurriculars are the factors that add onto one’s resume, showcasing different skills and passions as well as contributing to what sets that student apart. Colleges take into consideration the diverse interests of students, which depict much more than just academic focus. Instead of blindly choosing activities, try choosing ones that relate personally. Not only does this show interest and passion, but also depth that is shown through involvement and purpose. 

Volunteer Work

Although volunteering is often overlooked, it has many benefits, not only does it strengthen both academic and career opportunities, but also is responsible for the development of many life skills and reflects the moral of “giving back to the community.” For Ivy universities, it shows commitment to social responsibility, depth of one’s character, and showcases leadership. 


These prestigious Ivy universities consider leadership to be one of the greatest qualities a person can hold. They believe that leadership creates value and can lead to a change that would benefit the environment and others. To display signs of leadership, leading clubs and organizations and taking initiative during study or volunteer groups can add significance to this important skill. Colleges look for students who work well in various environments under different situations, thus this quality is something that should be developed and used.


Internships are another big leading factor when colleges look for passion and commitment. Internships allow for a student to get exposure to various activities and practical experience that would not typically be received in a classroom environment. Ivy League universities relate internships to how much the student will impact and contribute to that field, not only that but it depicts professional development as well as networking skills.


Skills are essential to add onto a resume because they provide evidence of the student’s capabilities and qualifications. Not only listing educational achievements and work experience, but highlighting skills showcases what the student can bring to the institution, demonstrating both ability and responsibility. Skills also help the resume stand out from the crowd, especially in the Ivy League admissions processes where recruiters and admissions officers are looking for candidates with a diverse set of abilities. 

Ivy League

Honors and Awards

Honors and awards serve to be a credible source that depict excellence and dedication. In competitive events– such as the Ivy League college admissions– these achieved awards serve as evidence of the student’s skillful abilities and contributions. Moreover, honors and awards carry weightage as colleges refer to it as a way for personal growth and advancement. 

Recommendation Letters

Recommendation letters are a critical aspect that not just Ivy, but all colleges look into. Recommendation letters are used as a source of credibility, and are written on behalf of the student by someone who has had a relationship to the student through some classes, activities, or organizations. The person who writes the letter has the purpose to vouch for the student’s education, performance, and excellence. Letters of recommendation are crucial because the college gains a sense of character and personality through someone else, which greatly depicts true nature. 

Personal Statement

Last but not least is the personal statement. The personal statement carries a significant amount of weightage in Ivy League admissions because it offers the chance for students to differentiate themselves from others beyond academics and extracurriculars. The personal statement can be used as a tool for applicants to showcase their unique perspectives, ideas, and aspirations, and even if there are some missing factors in one’s resume, a good personal statement would be more than enough to make up for it, thus depicting its importance.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q.1: How to start preparing for the Ivy League?

Ans: To start preparing, one must focus on maintaining high grades, doing well and participating in various extracurriculars, and excelling in standardized tests such as the SAT and ACT.

Q.2: What is the easiest Ivy to get into?

Ans: All Ivy League universities are competitive and are very difficult to gain admission to, the Ivy university with the highest acceptance rate is Cornell with 10.9%.

Q.3: What is the most important thing for an Ivy University?

Ans: Academic excellence, passion in what you do, and contributing to the community are highly prioritized for Ivy standards.

Q.4: Can I get into an Ivy with a low GPA?

Ans: Having a low GPA can decrease the chances of getting into an Ivy, but demonstrating exceptional growth and performance in other areas could make up for it.

Q.5: How do I prepare my kids for an Ivy?

Ans: Having the correct mindset is the way to go for preparation for Ivy universities. Following the tips above are ways that would prepare anyone for the rigor of these top universities.

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In conclusion, Ivy League admissions are not something to be underestimated. They are hard, rigorous, and especially competitive. There are many tasks and various commitments that need to be finished and made in order to even have a chance at getting into these colleges. Through many years of hard work, many have been able to get into their dream Ivy school, and through the effort, you will too.

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