I’ve been asked through email about this several times:
- I’ve heard that picking the right major helps you get into the best schools. Is this true?
- What majors are best to get me into college?
- Will my major impact my college admissions chances to get into Ivy League schools?
The short answer is: no, it doesn’t matter what major you pick. It will not hurt your chances of going to Harvard.
The long answer is: under some circumstances, the major/department that you choose can impact your chances. For instance, if you want to attend Wharton (at the University of Pennsylvania), it will be more difficult than if you decide to apply to their College of Arts & Sciences.
To take the analogy the next step, the Huntsman Program and Jerome Fisher program are even more selective.
So while overall undergraduate admission is rarely affected by which major you choose, there are particular programs that are selective (particularly in business and select honors programs).
Final takeaway? Don’t worry about which major you pick – most colleges don’t care and won’t ask you.
What if I want to do pre-med? Which colleges are good for pre-med?
You guys are thinking about this way too much. Generally, it doesn’t matter which institution you go to for pre-med. The vast majority of Top 50 schools will have solid, accredited pre-med programs.
Focus instead on getting into the most prestigious colleges – like Harvard, Stanford, and Princeton. This will give you the best chance at getting into the top medical schools, provided you have a HIGH GPA and strong MCAT score. (Didn’t I tell you over and over that GPA is important but not the only element?)
Medical schools increasingly look for well-rounded individuals, who have extensive research experience, international experience, and even diverse academic backgrounds (eg, pre-med engineers or pre-med business students).
Hope that helps!
Want to attend Ivy League schools? Check out my insider’s course and guide to getting into Harvard, even with a 1360 SAT from a public high school.