1) Know why you are applying to each specific college, and clearly express those reasons. Does the college have a great program for your intended major? Does it offer impressive internships, or have a high acceptance rate to med school? Does it host a study abroad program in a particular country that would benefit your academic interests? Let each college know the specifics as to why it’s a great fit, as colleges strongly favor applicants whom they believe will attend their school, if accepted.
2) Cover the basics – which means earning a great GPA while taking a competitive course load and posting impressive SAT scores. Many high schools in New Jersey offer twenty or more AP courses, and colleges consider how competitive a course load you took based on the options you were provided. As for SAT scores, the “average” SAT score at several New Jersey high schools, including Montgomery, Princeton and West Windsor-Plainsboro North and South, all topped 1,300. So the bar is set high for students who want to stand out among their peers.