Indeed and I won't stereotype but speak from person experience, some of which might sound like stereotype. Btw, I did have a few drinks tonight.
- Immigrated to US at early age from an Asian country.
- Top 1-2-3 math in class until 12th grade probability (may have mailed it in at that point, but also required more thought than repetition which comes easy to me).
- Sucked in SAT English, but did fine in class, esp grammar.
- Straight A student until high school.
- A- student in high school.
- More SAT prep classes than I can remember.
- Running joke among all my white friends was my mom saying, "you are a bad influence on Jimmy!'
- 1410 SAT early 1990s. 790 math, 620 verbal. There was a weird math curve that year. I got 1 question wrong. 620 on verbal was pretty much my max. I was struggling to pull 600 so I got lucky. At the time, breaking 1400 was the goal for most ivy seekers, so I just made it.
- Did every single activity I can think of. My mom pushed me, but it was also my doing.
- Fencing state ranked.
- Clarinet state ranked.
- Chief computer systems supervisor state ranked school news paper. The stuff we were doing with layouts was pretty revolutionary at the time for a high school paper.
- Every single math and science club.
- Columbia U geek program. Apparently this is really hard to get into these days.
- ssp.org summer science program .. majority of their graduates go to ivy or equivalent.
- Ranked 10 in high school class out of 250'ish.
- Applied to MIT early action and got in. Didn't apply anywhere else.
- 10 should not have been enough to get me into MIT. During that time only #1 ranked was getting into ivy'ish schools. I suspect it had to do with everything else I did.
- After I got in to college, high school was over for me. I just did enough to maintain.
- I really hated studying. My mom really pushed me through high school.
- So once I got into college, it was party time.
- Didn't study at all.
- Found that there were way way way more people way way way smarter than me.
- Found that there were way way way more people struggling way way way harder to get through school than I did.
- Found out I wasn't really that good of a fencer or clarinet player on a national scale, so I quit.
- Went to no classes except maybe the 1st one.
- Crammed for everything.
- Internship at Anderson Consulting (now Accenture).
- Somehow graduated with 4.0 (out of 5.0).
- 3 things really helped me with the 4.0 that I can think of: 1) Taking 2-3 days to run through as many examples as I can before tests. 2) Research intern professor who always gave me A's. 3) The state of writing in MIT must be really bad because I always got A's in my humanities classes. Seemed like for every C I got, I had an easy A to offset it.
- As I was graduating and started interviews, I found that only the top tier companies really cared about your GPA.
- Mostly, they know that you have zero experience and just want to know that you are normal and are a hard worker, willing to learn. They already know you got into a good school and graduated so must have some form of intelligence.
- I was socially awkward so I failed my first 10 interviews.
- As with everything for me, repetition makes everything "better than good enough" (B+/A-).
- After the first 10'ish, I was ace'ing my interviews with pre-defined answers + stories. There's only so many combo of questions they can ask you.
- After I started working for companies, I found out your prestigious undergrad degree may help you get your initial interview, but once you get in, it is worth shit.
- If you are productive, you are productive. If not, you will eventually be replaced or not go any higher.
- Since I hated studying, I never further than undergrad. But I could see all around me that people who had grad degrees were getting better placement in companies + better pay. Even people who went to far less appealing undergrad than me, but worked hard through undergrad and made it to a mid-prestigious grad school.
- Since I hated studying, I just stuck to what I was doing. I also liked what I was doing (programming), so I just stuck to what I was doing.
- 20 years later, I look at where I'm on the pay scale. Looks like it exceeds what my title says I can make.
- I work from home and go into the office whenever (usually for free lunch). Half the time I'm hopping around NYC coffee shops and helping random people. That is what my heart tells me to do these days.
- Not to say I don't work hard. Whenever I don't have something I want to do, I open up my laptop and work. It's just what I do.
- Right now, I would be working, but I find for some reason that I need to be writing this. Maybe I'm drunk.
Not sure what all this means. One thing I can say is since I graduated high school, I followed my heart. I can say this with absolute certainty because I am still not married and you know how much family lineage means to Asians (I'm the only son) ;P
Did the push my parents provide through high school affect me as much as I hated it? Certainly, greatly. Positive and negative? Certainly, greatly.
Show me a parent who did everything perfectly for you. There is no such thing. I see people from my type of circumstance (and even "smarter") who are now finding it hard to maintain a job. I see people from far "worse" circumstances doing "great". And I'm not just talking about a few fringe cases. There are examples like this everywhere I look.
So saying one way is better vs another way .. to me it is absolute garbage. Every individual will react differently to different methods and experiences. Some of your kids .. maybe you just leave them be and do whatever they want .. maybe they still end up in the same place, or better .. or maybe worse. No one really knows. You can't clone your kid to do a A/B experiment, at least not yet. All you can really do is follow your heart.
What really is a "better place" and "success" anyway? Is it monetary? Is it happiness or is it sacrifice or some combination of both? Is it fame? Is it doing good for society (pretty subjective)? Is it lying on a beach from age 40 to 80? Is it leaving something behind that future generations can remember you by? Is it traveling to as many countries as possible (I got this one from Tinder)? Is it your parents' dream for you? Does it mean one thing to one person and completely opposite for another person? Probably. Is it even mildly quantifiable? Probably not. All you can really do is follow your heart and see where it leads you and your loved ones.
I can continue talking about the afterlife and how all of our pursuits relate in the grand scheme of things, but I think I'll stop here for now
BTW, I meant no disrespect to anyone and apologize for the earlier post especially to @qclabrat .
On second read my attempt at interjecting my personal experience had been jaded by recent issues and should not reflect on anyone or be viewed as stereotypical.
I also applied for MIT early decision, however had a quick rejection letter. Applications were much cheaper then
also what's the difference between SAT prep classes vs elite soccer or baseball camps. Most won't be good enough to go beyond being an average college athlete but it's often their parents wishes. You know, The father who blew out his shoulder in HS who thought they were special or the captain of the football team in HS when they were the guy.
Some kids really appreciate being pushed, some don't. Some need help in places their parents are completely unaware, some don't. I don't think parents should generalize and judged for this.
Didn't mean to derail your thread. My original DJ recommendation should be checked out. I'm sure you could pay a lot less if you just need a DJ. We also had an MC, 2 dancing girls, a photo montage and a photo booth in our cost.
Every parent wants their kid on a travel team, especially the type A, over achievers in your area with too much money and large egos. Unfortunately these days being mediocre at sports is akin to being inferior.
Push academics over sports. Your more likely to get into more colleges and pay less for it with a higher SAT then greater athletic ability.
Great post @soundz. I had pretty much the total opposite experience. My grandparents were supportive but didn't have the experience or resources to offer any guidance as far as education goes. My SAT prep was reading the instruction page on the back. It said you would be penalized for wrong answers, so I left a bunch blank. I think I landed around 1200. The only reason I probably even sent out a college application was because writing a college admission essay was a requirement for senior English which I needed to graduate (from Somerville, @Carson). I only applied to Rutgers, and I dropped out after a semester because I didn't know how to register or pay for classes. They held your hand the first semester. All this seems like a lifetime ago.
I only know one DJ, but he does the glowsticks and drugs kinda parties. Probably not what you're looking for.