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Be University of Pennsylvania-Bound with IvyBound!

University of Pennsylvania-- #6 (tied) National University (US News & World Report)

University of Pennsylvania is a private institution that was founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin. Inspired by the intellectual audacity and educational ideals of our founder, Benjamin Franklin, the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) offers a compelling mixture of world-class liberal arts coursework and pre-professional education.

Students apply to one of four undergraduate schools—Arts and Sciences, Nursing, Engineering and Applied Science, or Wharton. Penn also offers an array of exciting interdisciplinary programs and courses which leverage the resources of different departments or schools, such as the Fisher Program in Management and Technology, the Huntsman Program in International Studies and Business, and the Vagelos Program in Life Sciences and Management. Students are strongly encouraged to engage the world beyond Penn, both locally and globally.

As one of the world’s premier research universities, Penn offers students the opportunity to learn by participating in the hands-on creation of new knowledge. The Center for Undergraduate Research, the Kelly Writers House, the Weiss Tech House, and the Penn Museum are places that connect undergraduates to leading researchers at Penn and to the cutting-edge ideas of its laboratories and seminar rooms.


Penn prides itself on being the place for firsts. For greats. For sparking revolutionary ideas. For Ivy League prestige and Philly spirit. And for nurturing innovative thinkers who see that the way things are isn’t the way things have to be. Today Ben Franklin would marvel at the intellectual and social excitement of the diverse and dynamic institution he founded.

Admissions Requirements

Application Fee$75, waived for financial aid applicants
Standardized TestsSAT or ACT (Essay optional)
SAT Subject Tests

Two Recommended:

  • Business: Math 2 and another

  • Nursing: Science, preferably Chemistry and another

  • Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences: any two

  • Science, Technology, Engineering, Math (STEM): Math 2 and a science (Engineering prefer Physics)  

AP and IB examsYou may self-report
Supplement Questions/Essays (found in the Writing Supplement section in My Colleges tab on the Common Application- Questions are updated August of every year.)1 short Essay required and some short Questions
Recommendations2 Teacher Recommendations and Counselor of Record Report
Additional RecommendationOptional
From Your High SchoolSchool Report, Transcript, Midyear Report, Final Report
InterviewOptional, dependent upon availability
OptionalFine Arts Portfolio
International StudentsTOEFL or IELTS
Early DecisionNovember 1, decision by mid-December.
Regular DecisionJanuary 5, decision by mid-to-late March

Academic Parameters

When applying to an institution, it is important to look at the academic information of previous applicants. This includes the SAT/ACT test scores, SAT Subject test scores (if available), GPA ranges, or class ranking. By looking at these data points, you may assess where you fall and how likely is your admission into this college. Please note, there are students who do fall below the middle range and are still admitted, but then their application has one or more factors that boosts their application, such as a special talent, a recruitable athlete, legacy, racial or socioeconomic minority. Use the chart below to see where you fall and if you may raise your test scores and grades to keep your application in the running.

Testing/GPA Guidelines

Middle 50 SAT (means the 50% of incoming students scored at or higher)

Math: 740-800

Evidenced-based Reading and Writing: 700-760

Middle 50 ACT

Composite Score: 32-35

ACT Math: 30-35

ACT Reading: 34-36

GPA Range (unweighted)

94% of students had GPA of 3.50+:

85% of students had GPA 3.75+

9% of students had GPA 3.50 to 3.74

IvyBound Consulting featured Harvard University on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter from March 11-16, 2019

Day 1 • University of Pennsylvania

According to US News & World Report, University of Pennsylvania is ranked #8 in National Universities, tied with Duke University. Schools are ranked according to their performance across a set of widely accepted indicators of excellence. Please check their website to read up on these indicators. We are using US News for its popularity, but by no means should they be the only source in determining your “best fit” college. Your best fit colleges should be determined by your academic goals, your personality fit, and financial considerations.

University of Pennsylvania:
Private, Total undergraduate enrollment of 10,033 with a campus size of 299 acres.

Founded in 1740 by Benjamin Franklin.

Urban: located in the town of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Tuition & Fees:
$55,584 (2018-19), room and board is additional.

$13.8 billion (2018)

Almost all first-year students reside within the eleven College Houses at Penn, which link intellectual and social experiences through close contact with faculty-in-residence and student resident assistants. Many students live in the numerous off-campus apartments and houses available. More than 25 percent of the student body is involved in Greek life, which encompasses nearly 50 fraternities and sororities.

Admit Rate:
Most competitive, admit rate in single digits

55% female/45% male. Ethnicity/Race: 37.9% White, 22.5% Asian, 7.5% African American, 10.2% Hispanic, 1Native American student, 4 Native Hawaiian students,4.8% Two or more races, 3.8% Unknown, Approximately, 15% of students are International students, making the student body of the University of Pennsylvania ethnically diverse.

Religious Affiliation:

Other Awards by US News:
#8 (tie) in National Universities, #12 in Best Value Schools, #6 (tie) in High School Counselor Rankings

Day 2 • School Mission, Mascot, Sports

University motto:
The University’s motto is “Leges sine moribus vanae” translates as laws without morals are useless.

Penn’s mascot is the Quaker. You will often find the quaker performing in football games.

Red and blue

Penn’s vision of sports goes beyond wins and losses. Penn athletics are built on character first, and continued development as young adults who are both students and athletes. The Penn Quakers have more than 25 NCAA Division I sports that compete in the Ivy League, and are noted for successful basketball and lacrosse teams. A total of 200 Olympic athletes have represented Penn in every summer game from 1900 to 2012.

Day 3 • Academic at Princeton/Top Undergraduate Majors/Student Life

Penn has 12 schools: Five offer undergraduate and graduate studies, and seven offer only graduate studies. The student-faculty ratio at the Penn is 5:1.

Academic calendar:

Top Undergraduate Majors:
Engineering; Social Sciences; Biological and Biomedical Sciences; Public Administration and Social Service Professions; and History. In addition, students are encouraged to enroll in the University’s 53 interdisciplinary certificate programs.

Undergraduate schools:
Arts and Sciences, Nursing, Engineering and Applied Science, or Wharton

Highly-ranked Graduate programs:
Penn’s highly ranked graduate programs include its Wharton School, School of Education, School of Engineering and Applied Science, Law School and School of Medicine. Penn’s other notable graduate programs include its School of Design and School of Dental Medicine.

Student Life:
Penn has over 300 student groups ranging from political action to performing arts to sports clubs to student publications offering all students opportunities to pursue a wide-range of interests. Such opportunities extend beyond campus to the City of Philadelphia where students can experience the rich cultural, athletic, social, and political life of America’s most historic city. Penn works closely with the West Philadelphia area through community service and advocacy groups. The Civic House provides a “hub” for students interested in all kinds of community service while the Center for Community Partnerships coordinates over 150 Academically Based Community Service courses each term which link theory and practice through activities that make a significant difference in West Philadelphia and the City. Penn, though secular, has a strong religious life with its Hillel for Jewish students, Penn Newman Catholic Center and InterVarsity Christian Fellowship.

Day 4 • Notable Alumni

Notable alumni include singer John Legend, poet William Carlos Williams and President Donald Trump. Trump’s legacy carried on to Ivanka Trump and Tiffany, who also attended Penn. Hunger games actress, Elizabeth Banks is featured on the Instagram post, who graduated from Penn in 1996.

Day 5 • Applying to Princeton? Be Collegebound with IvyBound

Looking at first-time, Freshman Applicants:

Admission Rate: 8.4%
, including early applicants, (as of July 2018)

Total Applicants:



Yield Rate:
67%- Number of students who actually attended or matriculated once admitted.

***Admissions Trick: Colleges want their number of applicants to be high, admit rates to be low and yield rate to be high.

Early Option:
Early Decision (November 1 is deadline)

Regular Deadline:
January 5

Admission Requirements:
See Table above

Admissions into prestigious University of Pennsylvania, is extremely competitive as the acceptance rate is decreasing each year. With the increase of sheer number of applicants, how do you stand out and get admitted? If University of Pennsylvaniais one of the colleges on your list, use this invaluable worksheet to plan and prepare to apply to UPenn.

IvyBound Consulting offers personalized college admissions services to help you create winning college applications that surely gets you admitted. Choose from one-on-one counseling services, college admissions online course- Applications That Get You Admitted!, private facebook group membership, and essay review and editing services.

Next week, I will cover, US News Week’s #10 Nationally Ranked University, John Hopkins University. Stay Tuned.

Be Collegebound with IvyBound!

* Sources used: the college website, common data set, college factual, US World News, other websites.

Hey guys, welcome to the episodes Be Collegebound with IvyBound! I’m your host, Ruchi S. Kothari. I’m super excited that you’ve joined me.

Listen to my most recent podcast or watch my video to pick up admissions tips, tricks, and secrets that I provide to get admitted into the college of your dreams, and create a future that you would love. Do you want to get into your dream school? Of course, you do. 


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