High School to College with Bad Grades

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  • Thread starter frosty7
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  • #26
jtbell
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Congratulations and good luck at Pitt! My roommate in physics grad school at U of Michigan 30-odd years ago did his undergrad at Pitt, by the way, so I feel a kind of connection with the place even though I've never been there.
 
  • #27
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I just remembered this forum/thread today. I figured I would update you guys on my situation. I really turned my academic career around shortly after creating this thread. I've been doing really well in high school, i got 2 5's on the only two AP exams i took last year(Micro Economics & Statistics) Right now, I'm pulling an A+ in AP physics and two A's in AP Computer Science & Ap Calc ab. I even got accepted into the engineering program at the University of Pittsburgh. I wanted to thank everyone here for their advice & words of encouragement. You really motivated me to turn everything around, so thank you.

Wow, congratulations!! Keep up the good work!! :smile:
 
  • #28
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I'm currently a junior in highschool. I started taking physics this year and it is my favorite out of any class I've ever taken in my life. I really like it; my favorite classes before taking physics were just the ones that I hated the least.
Right now my GPA is really bad (like 2.8-2.9), but I plan on getting that up. My low GPA was not a result of a lack of talent/intelligence, but instead was a result of a lack of work/motivation. I have been in the highest level of math offered (2 grade levels above normal) since 6th grade.
I really like physics and seem to be good at it (I'm aware that there is a significant difference between high school physics and college level physics, but I am far and away one of the best in my class). I would really like to pursue either a degree in engineering or a degree physics( the most appealing choice of major for me would be aerospace[more specifically aeronautical]), but I am worried that my low GPA will kill me. I just took the SATs and have not seen my results, but I really feel as though i performed extremely well on the math section.

Does anyone have any advice to help me get into a good college?

I was the same in everything that you said up there. I had around a 2.9gpa due of lack of motivation and effort, my favorite classes were just the ones I hated the least, I fell in love in physics when I took it junior year, and I was also pulled in by either physics or aerospace engineering.

In contrast, I currently have a 3.9gpa, it really helps to go into a community college because it greatly eases the transition! I would recommend it. I'm now pursuing something along theoretical physics and will see where life takes me. It would be interesting to see how things unfold for you in the future. I was almost sucked up into engineering because of my fear of failure [not getting the job that I want] and all the propaganda of getting a big $$$ job.

Like I said before, I really recommend you apply for a nearby community college. You will have a closer relationship with the staff there and in turn it will be easier for you to get a recommendation letter instead of being a no-name in an introductory >50-student class. You will also have a much-needed transition between your bad performance in high school. Trust me, take it from someone who has been there and back; if you lived all your life with bad work habits then the transition won't be easy. Lots of subtle things like how to study certain material can completely blow out of proportions and ruin your semester. There will also be a lot of material t you will need to look back and re-learn because you will find out that you didn't really learn anything at all in high school. Mathematics and physics is cumulative! There is so much that can go wrong, and don't forget that the poorer your performance is at school then the more demotivated you will be.

I can be your mentor, feel free to ask me any question; your time can be much more efficient by learning from the mistakes of others.
 
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  • #29
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I just read that you got accepted into the University of Pittsburgh. Congratulations. You can follow that route if you want, but be ready to work much harder. It is certainly very doable, but my main concern is the risk involved.

You should also know that there is nothing wrong with community-colleges. I have other physics friends that go to different universities, they don't know any more than I do I can tell you that for sure. I go above and beyond in my classes, I don't compete with people in my class. Rather, I compete as if I am in a classroom at a more competitive university with imaginary people.

And while many people are "negative influence" at community-colleges like you said, that is the same throughout any college you go to. Their negative influence only comes from their lack of motivation and love for knowledge. This is apparent throughout any university.
 
  • #30
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Sorry but I got a kick out of you saying it "eliminates you from the Ivies." Understatement of the century. I didn't get into any top 25 schools with a 3.7 and a couple awards for physics related things.

Pretty much this. I anticipate I will graduate with a 4.7 GPA (1 semester and 3 weeks) and I cba to apply to any Ivies. My GPA is too low for them.
 

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