STEP 2: Develop a Compelling Application
There are currently over 1 million international students in the USA.
What do you think it took for them to apply and be admitted?
Let’s review some key points on planning, developing and submitting your application.
It is never too early to start your application. In between academic work, exams, extracurriculars, professional or practical experience, test prep, university selection, EDMERICA workshops, statement of purpose reviews and obtaining the perfect recommendations, you’ll have your work cut out for you, whether you’re an energetic do-er or a meticulous planner. It is wise to allow 12-18 months between starting the application process and starting university (for example, if you want to apply during your final years of undergraduate/graduate studies, start planning the application at the latest during the previous March-August interval). However, one application calendar doesn’t fit all. Contact us to plan your own application calendar!
The U.S. educational system is decentralized and each university – in fact, each program – may decide on application dates, requirements and financial aid. Deadlines usually start in November and continue through February or even later for some programs. Admissions arrive on a rolling basis or until the spring.
The Application Package
Admissions procedures and requirements for admission of international students vary among U.S. graduate programs. However, applications usually include the following items:
- Application form (usually, university-specific);
- Official transcripts/educational records (“foaia matricolă/supliment la diplomă”), original and translation (don’t rush to the translator’s office before talking to us) – partial or complete, depending on when you are applying;
- Standardized test scores (GRE/GMAT, TOEFL/IELTS);
- Statement of purpose: program-specific;
- 2-4 letters of recommendation;
- A separate application for funding, if requested;
- Non-refundable application fee of $30-150/fee waiver request.
The holistic application includes quantitative and qualitative elements. This way, the universities you are targeting can get both objective and subjective insights into your preparation level, personality, and potential for future academic and professional success. U.S. universities encourage academic performance, but they are also very interested in what you do with your spare time. For the U.S. application, everything about you – especially if presented in the appropriate strategic manner – is relevant. Herein lies one of the unique features of U.S. admissions: given proper timing, strategic planning and dedicated work, together we can craft an application that maximizes your chances at admission and funding!
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