Student A Gets Accepted to Northwestern!

Northwestern University

Student A is from Massachusetts and he started working with us in 9th grade. He completed our Candidacy Building, Writing Class, Academic Mentorship, and Application Counseling programs. Student A was admitted to Northwestern University!

Application Persona

Inquisitive historian and aspiring political leader who is passionate about journalism and helping his community.

High School Location



Top 10% of class


(1540 Superscore)

Areas of Interest

Political Science

Extracurricular Activities

  • Co-Founder of Journalism/Media Literacy Program
  • Treasurer, then Vice-President of Student Congress
  • Intern/Staff Member in Non-Profit Organization
  • Co-Chair of Environmental Policy Group in Region's Student Advisory Council
  • Co-Features Editor, then Editor in Chief of High School Newspaper

The Challenges

  • Student A wanted to apply to schools with single-digit acceptance rates.
  • Student A’s GPA was "good" but not "great" for the Top 10 Schools he was aiming for.
  • Student A's area of interest was unclear when he started with us, which made planning extracurriculars challenging.
  • Student A's initial profile did not stand out as unique and memorable.

How Did InGenius Prep Help?

Candidacy Building: 

  • Analysis of Strengths and Weaknesses: When Student A began working with us, his counseling team assessed his strengths and weaknesses to determine areas of improvement and strengths to highlight.
  • Candidacy Building Roadmap: Based on his Strengths and Weaknesses Assessment, we built a Candidacy Building Roadmap with a timeline and action items that served as a guide for the work ahead. After each meeting, student A's counselors communicated his progress and action items.
  • Test Schedule Planning: We structured a testing schedule that included a study timeline, target scores, and backup test dates to keep Student A on track.
  • Interest Exploration: Student A's area of interest was unclear when he started with us. He originally thought he would want to pursue Social Sciences in college. Student A's team encouraged him to explore his many interests through research, classes, and activities. Through this process, Student A determined that he wanted to pursue his interests in Journalism and Political Science.
  • Extracurricular Enhancement: We set both short-term and long-term goals for Student A based on his roadmap. These included items like attending writing and debate conferences, participating in new activities, applying for leadership positions, entering writer's competitions, writing for the school newspaper, and creating a podcast.
  • Academic Writing Seminar:
    • Pairing: We paired Student A with one of our expert writing instructors with the goal of further developing his writing skills, especially in academic writing.
    • Outcome: Student A's counselors used concrete feedback from his writing instructors to build his profile and hone his Application Persona.
  • Academic Mentorship:
    • Pairing: We paired Student A one of our Academic Mentors from Yale so he could further develop his interest in journalism and political science.
    • Outcome: Student A studied the role of media in a historical context. This work resulted in his signature project, a program that he founded through which he taught middle school students about journalism and media literacy. This was later listed as Student A's first activity in the Common App and was the subject of one of his supplemental essays.

Application Counseling:

  • Timeline: After working with Student A to improve his profile and enhance his writing and journalism skills, we shifted our focus to his applications. The summer before his senior year, we began work on his personal statement, activities list, and common app.
  • Application Persona: 
    • Background: Student A's counseling team already had a strong concept of what his Application Persona would be after working with him throughout Candidacy Building.
    • Persona: The central theme of Student A’s application was “Inquisitive historian and aspiring political leader who is passionate about journalism and helping his community.” Student A and his counselors would now work to have his Application Persona shine through in each application component. 
  • Personal Statement:
    • Topic Selection: Student A's counseling team used our proprietary curriculum to evaluate possible Personal Statement topics, with the goal of ensuring that it would highlight his Application Persona while being interesting and memorable. 
    • Strategy: He and his team settled on a topic that would ultimately showcase Student A’s development and pursuit of his passion for writing.
    • Outcome: With a finalized topic, Student A’s counselors helped him outline his personal statement, provided high-level feedback, and gave in-line edits until the essay was perfect.
  • Supplemental Essays: Student A would need to write numerous supplemental essays for the schools on his list. To stay organized and get the brainstorming process started, his counseling team created a master supplemental essay document. This file included all the essay questions for every school Student A was applying to and kept track of his progress, edits, and feedback. One of Student A's supplemental essays was about his signature project on journalism and media literacy.
  • Activities List:
    • Background: By the time Student A was applying, he had many extracurriculars to include in his activities list!
    • Strategizing: Student A's counselors carefully sorted through all of his activities and picked out the most impactful extracurriculars to list at the top.
    • Final Version: Student A's final activities list included his experiences in Student Congress, Student Advisory Council, his school's newspaper, and more. His signature project got the top spot on his list!
  • Final Review: Once Student A's application was shaped after several rounds of edits with his Graduate Coach, his Former Admissions Officer conducted a Final Review, analyzing Student A’s application as if they were still in the admissions office. After the FAO's feedback on word choice, formatting, and more, Student A was ready to submit!

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