Does the major or program you apply to matter in college admissions? It sure does. And one of the most popular majors right now is business.
When a student tells me they are interested in applying to undergraduate business programs, I challenge their interests, ask questions about why they want to do it (beyond the fact that a parent works in business), and what specific area they want to pursue (beyond just saying "Finance" or another vast field of business). I do this because I know that they not only have to articulate these answers in their applications, but the bar is extremely high for these applicants given how selective undergraduate business programs have become.
1. All business applicants need to be taking the most challenging math classes through senior year.
2. Students need to be getting their highest grades in math through senior year.
3. Business elective classes are a good way to determine if you are interested in majoring in business, but elective classes should never replace a core academic subject like English, math, history, science, or foreign language.
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4. If you plan to report your SAT or ACT scores, make sure the math section is your best score.
5. Taking AP Economics (Microeconomics and Macroeconomics) is a nice class to fulfill your history course for senior year, but it's not absolutely essential.
6. AP Statistics can be a great class to take, but it should never take the place of AP Calculus AB or AP Calculus BC.
7. Ask teachers in one of the five core academic subjects for letters of recommendation.
You don't need to have a letter from a math teacher, per se.
8. Pursue at least one or two activities or work experiences that back up your interest in business—the more distinctive it is, the better.
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9. Write supplemental essays about your business interest that no other student could write.
10. This is the most important step—adjust your college list significantly to incorporate colleges that have higher acceptance rates if you plan to apply to business programs.
READ MORE: How to Build a Balanced College List