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M.S. Statistics - (early) Profile evaluation

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I am a transfer student about to go to UCDavis. As of now, I have a 3.38 GPA and I have yet to start doing major coursework for the Stats undergrad. This means I still have two years to raise my GPA. 


I will start fresh with a brand new major GPA, but I can only raise my overall GPA to a certain point. I'd say a 3.5 overall by the end of the second year is very doable, but anything higher than 3.65 would be impossible.


Anyways, I am just trying to think ahead of time, since I want to be at a good position to apply when I graduate.


Question: In order to get into a prestigious school's graduate program, will a 3.5 overall GPA be a problem? What GPA should I strive to get in order to be competitive?


Example: UCBerkeley, Stanford, Columbia, etc... etc...



Or should I settle for a mid tier school instead? It is very common for people to place huge amounts of effort into unattainable goals and I wonder if I should focus my attention towards my ECs instead of getting straight As. That is, of course, if I know that a top tier program would be an unattainable goal.


Thank you in advance for your opinion!

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Just do your thing, enjoy your new university, worry about what's realistic later once you have more information. For graduate school, extracurriculars don't matter, except perhaps to the extent that they have faculty advisors who get to know you better through them and will write nice things about you later. Participate in clubs/societies if you're genuinely interested, but don't expect them to be a way to make up for poor grades.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Does your GPA actually transfer? I always thought that transfer students start with no GPA and the GPA they graduate with refers to all classes taken at that university?

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That is weird. For some reason I missed all of these posts before.


My major is Statistics B.S. I am transferring in the Fall to UCDavis. So far, every class I took was in a community college.


I have heard as well that the GPA does not transfer. However, since I intend to go to grad school, I should take my CC classes into consideration when calculating my GPA since I know that it will affect me in the future. Am I right by doing so?

But you are right, Davis will not care about my CC GPA, but I assume that every grad school would take that GPA into my overall GPA calculations.


I am taking the first Calculus class now in the summer so needless to say I am way behind on my major. I will probably only start doing major coursework next year and predict I will earn my degree in 3 years from now.


I know this is a bit early, but I have made the mistake of not planning things in the past and ended up with an average GPA and spending a very long time in a community college. Therefore, I want to start preparing now for grad school.


I will be joining an Air Force ROTC detachment as well and that is the extracurricular that I mentioned. The ROTC program can be extremely demanding at times and cadets often see a decrease in their GPA. However, knowing myself and what I am capable of, I am certain that I can maintain an average of 3.5 GPA in the future and possibly raise my overall to a 3.5 along with my future major GPA.


My question basically is:


With the assumption that I will achieve an overall and major GPA of 3.5, is there a realistic chance that I will get accepted in the schools mentioned above? Or is a 3.5 too low for top tier schools?


What would say about a Phd? Does the same apply to those programs?


Thank you all in advance.


And by the way, are you the same Clarinetist from the Actuary forum and reddit? It would be quite a coincidence. 

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I'm not sure about PhD programs, but yes, it is possible to get into the Masters program at some of those schools with a GPA of 3.5.  I. got into the Masters Biostat programs at Berkeley and UCLA (among others) with a 3.5.  It probably depends a lot on how you do in individual courses.  I got an A or A- in all my undergrad math and stat courses and a 166 on the quant GRE, which I think showed that I was at least competent in my math abilities even if my overall grades were only okay and not sky-high.

Edited by Severina
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