June 24, 2024

How I got into Colby College as an international student from China

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Zhaoxiang from China πŸ‡¨πŸ‡³

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How I got into Colby College as an international student from China

Hi, my name is Leo and I come from China. I recently got accepted into Colby College - a liberal arts college in Maine, United States.

My background

I attended Shenzhen College of International Education, located in Shenzhen, one of China's youngest and most developed cities. During my first two years, I studied the IGCSE curriculum, followed by two years of A-levels. Throughout my four-year program, I focused on biology, chemistry, mathematics, and English. For the first three years, I also studied physical education, which fascinated me with topics such as anatomy and physiology. Additionally, I studied psychology during my final two years.

Why I decided to go abroad

As a child, my parents often took me to different places around the world. This experience inspired me to consider attending a university outside my home country, as I believe it would offer opportunities to learn new and different things.

Moreover, I have concerns about the current university admission process in China. For most applicants, it primarily considers exam results, which I believe doesn't truly fulfill the goals of education. I'm uncomfortable with the atmosphere this approach has fostered, where a significant number of people believe that years of a person's life are only meaningful if they achieve high scores on a few tests.

In contrast, I value personal stories, sports, extracurricular activities, and many other aspects of life beyond exams. For these reasons, I believe applying to universities abroad is more aligned with my ideals and educational goals.

Why Colby?

I considered applying to Colby College somewhat of a long shot, especially since I applied during the Regular Decision round, given its competitive nature. However, I chose to apply to Colby for several reasons:

Firstly, I believe a liberal arts education would be well-suited to my academic interests and learning style. Secondly, I prefer a less populated area for my studies. Having spent much of my life in cities and crowded areas, Colby's location in a small town in Maine appeals to me.

Most importantly, Colby College itself is the primary draw. The college has a strong reputation in fields related to health science, which are areas I'm most likely to pursue for deeper study in the future. This advantage in my potential areas of specialization makes Colby an ideal choice for my undergraduate education.

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Stats and Grades

I submitted my highest SAT score of 1520, which consists of a perfect 800 in the Math section and 720 in the English section. Additionally, I applied with a TOEFL score of 110. For my A-level predictions, I applied with an A* predicted grade in Chemistry and A grades predicted for all my other subjects.

My Extracurriculars

During my second year, I participated in the International Genetically Engineered Machine (iGEM) Competition, where I received a gold medal and two best nominations. This experience made me realize that genetic engineering wasn't the field I wanted to pursue. Subsequently, I diversified my activities. I participated in the Youth Observation Competition (YOC) and received a superior award. I also joined HOSA-Future Health Professionals, studying nutrition, and took part in numerous chemistry and biology competitions.

I founded two clubs at my school: a mythology club and a well-being club in collaboration with a friend. I was also a member of the Red Cross Society and captain of the school's basketball team.

My internship experiences included working at a sports rehabilitation center, where I gained a fundamental understanding of physiotherapy and common sports injuries. I assisted medical professionals in helping patients. Another internship involved being an assistant coach at a basketball club, providing basketball education for younger children.

I believe my most meaningful experiences were in research. My first research project resulted in the publication of an article about protein consumption status and health facts, particularly muscle health, among elderly people in China. The second was an interdisciplinary field study in Beijing, where I combined traditional culture with new nutritional science to promote healthier diets among the elderly. Although abstract and challenging, I found it fascinating how culture significantly influences our diet. I realized that changing diets involves more than just altering what we eat; it's also about understanding and respecting cultural factors.

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from China πŸ‡¨πŸ‡³

Duration of Study

Aug 2024 β€” Jun 2028


Science, technology and society

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