Do Something, Then Do It Better


Gone are the days of only grades and strong test scores solely determining your place at Harvard and the likes. With over 250,000 applicants to the Ivy Leagues each year and acceptance rates lower than 6% (Princeton, Harvard), straight A’s and a strong ACT score, unfortunately, no longer cut it!

Hello, Profile! What is a profile, you may ask? It is a demonstrated, coordinated, and coherent record of increasing engagement over time in a chosen field. A chosen field can be anything, from a social initiative supporting women’s health to competitive ice skating, but should be something outside of the classroom. By no means does this mean that a profile, should not be connected to the classroom or academics. Far from it. However, illustrating that demonstrated and increasing engagement in a particular field, is key to a strong profile!

Let’s try to build Rahul’s profile. Rahul is a grade 11 student who is interested in studying business and has been playing the piano for 12 years. He then passes the Grade 8 level Trinity exam in the next few months. At the end of grade 11, he organises a benefit concert, with a group of external young musicians, to raise funds for a local charity. The event is being sponsored by a large corporation and there will be food and drink vendors.

Notice how playing the piano was his chosen field, yet was only the first stage of what turned out to be a multi-stage progression of Rahul’s interest in music and business. In other words, simply playing the piano is great; having passed the Trinity Grade 8 Level exam is outstanding; and going above and beyond to use your talent for social good, ultimately connecting his efforts in music to his interest in business (by working with corporations and external vendors) is absolutely fabulous