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Hello! So I am an immigrant of 5 years from a country in Europe.
I wanted check off the disadvantaged status box, because I came in during my Junior year of hs, and my high school had almost no resources or understanding of students from other countries. I wanted to take AP classes in Chemistry and Physics, as I knew these were my weak areas. The high school would not allow it and I got stuck with two years of Biology, which gave me a good background but once I got to college I had no knowlege in the other sciences. Taking Chemistry especially in English, at a college level was difficult. Would this be okay to write, obviously in a better format, in the description?
Also, how do you write about prejudice in a way that does not hurt you? This is something I experienced, but I do not want to sound resentful or bitter. Here is what I have: "I have always proudly shared I am (ethnicity) but some of my successes in college, like doing well in English classes, were explicitly attributed to ‘having a language barrier’ by a few of my peers along the way. I believe that due to those particular instances I am stronger, more resilient, and always advocating against prejudice of any kind. Being an immigrant is an identity I proudly display, and I am grateful that my background allowed me the privilege of having a broader perspective of the world.

Thank you!
 
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Hello! So I am an immigrant of 5 years from a country in Europe.
I wanted check off the disadvantaged status box, because I came in during my Junior year of hs, and my high school had almost no resources or understanding of students from other countries. I wanted to take AP classes in Chemistry and Physics, as I knew these were my weak areas. The high school would not allow it and I got stuck with two years of Biology, which gave me a good background but once I got to college I had no knowlege in the other sciences. Taking Chemistry especially in English, at a college level was difficult. Would this be okay to write, obviously in a better format, in the description?
Also, how do you write about prejudice in a way that does not hurt you? This is something I experienced, but I do not want to sound resentful or bitter. Here is what I have: "I have always proudly shared I am (ethnicity) but some of my successes in college, like doing well in English classes, were explicitly attributed to ‘having a language barrier’ by a few of my peers along the way. I believe that due to those particular instances I am stronger, more resilient, and always advocating against prejudice of any kind. Being an immigrant is an identity I proudly display, and I am grateful that my background allowed me the privilege of having a broader perspective of the world.

Thank you!
TBH, your story is your own, and you should tell it in whatever way you feel presents you in the best light. My only comment, based on what you are saying above, is to stay away from not being allowed to take AP classes in HS as making you "disadvantaged." In case you don't fully understand, "AP" stand for "Advanced Placement," and is supposedly college-level material for "advanced" students in the subject.

It is unclear why you would think you belong in such a class in subjects that you acknowledge were your "weak areas," but the school clearly made the correct call in denying you entry into classes for which you were not qualified. The fact that you struggled in chemistry in college is further evidence that you would not have been able to handle AP chemistry in HS. It's really kind of backwards to think that earlier exposure to material that was over your head would have better prepared you for college.

You can and should talk about prejudice, your immigrant experience, and disadvantaged status (if applicable) in the appropriate places in your application, but talking about being denied advanced opportunities for which you were not qualified in HS will not help evidence the fact that you were disadvantaged. You are on the right track insofar as reflecting on how unfair prejudice sensitized you to its evils by making you more resilient is better than sounding bitter and resentful. Good luck!!!
 
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Goro

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Hello! So I am an immigrant of 5 years from a country in Europe.
I wanted check off the disadvantaged status box, because I came in during my Junior year of hs, and my high school had almost no resources or understanding of students from other countries. I wanted to take AP classes in Chemistry and Physics, as I knew these were my weak areas. The high school would not allow it and I got stuck with two years of Biology, which gave me a good background but once I got to college I had no knowlege in the other sciences. Taking Chemistry especially in English, at a college level was difficult. Would this be okay to write, obviously in a better format, in the description?
Also, how do you write about prejudice in a way that does not hurt you? This is something I experienced, but I do not want to sound resentful or bitter. Here is what I have: "I have always proudly shared I am (ethnicity) but some of my successes in college, like doing well in English classes, were explicitly attributed to ‘having a language barrier’ by a few of my peers along the way. I believe that due to those particular instances I am stronger, more resilient, and always advocating against prejudice of any kind. Being an immigrant is an identity I proudly display, and I am grateful that my background allowed me the privilege of having a broader perspective of the world.

Thank you!
Doesn't sound like disadvantaged to me.

Dealing with prejudice is fodder for secondary essays
 
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@thepotatodog were you permitted to take any physics and chemistry classes in high school? What had you taken in Europe and what did you take in the US? How many years did you attend HS in the US?
I did my Junior and Senior years of high school in the US. I wanted to take AP, but even so I was not allowed to take any Physics or Chemistry, because my highschool wanted me to only do Biology. They had me take both Sophmore and Junior English classes at once to improve my English even though I knew I wanted to study sciences. I chose to take AP Biology over other sciences my Senior year, as it was the only advanced placement class I would be allowed to take. I think this is understandable since I wanted to get into a good college and most competitive colleges admit students who have taken multiple AP courses. Another part of the story was the fact that I was told by multiple admissions counselors at the time that I would be admitted mostly based on my last two years, which I do not belive is completely fair considering most students had 4 years to prepare.
The way school worked in Europe was by taking all sciences at once every single year. This meant that you would have a very diluted amount of information every single year (about 2 hours per week of each science), and those would equal one year of a science in American terms. Since I did 2 years of all the sciences in my country, this meant I basically completed one semester of each science by the end of Sophmore year, then went straight into college with that knowledge in Physics and Chem.
Thanks!
 
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TBH, your story is your own, and you should tell it in whatever way you feel presents you in the best light. My only comment, based on what you are saying above, is to stay away from not being allowed to take AP classes in HS as making you "disadvantaged." In case you don't fully understand, "AP" stand for "Advanced Placement," and is supposedly college-level material for "advanced" students in the subject.

It is unclear why you would think you belong in such a class in subjects that you acknowledge were your "weak areas," but the school clearly made the correct call in denying you entry into classes for which you were not qualified. The fact that you struggled in chemistry in college is further evidence that you would not have been able to handle AP chemistry in HS. It's really kind of backwards to think that earlier exposure to material that was over your head would have better prepared you for college.

You can and should talk about prejudice, your immigrant experience, and disadvantaged status (if applicable) in the appropriate places in your application, but talking about being denied advanced opportunities for which you were not qualified in HS will not help evidence the fact that you were disadvantaged. You are on the right track insofar as reflecting on how unfair prejudice sensitized you to its evils by making you more resilient is better than sounding bitter and resentful. Good luck!!!
Yep you are right in that regard. I was not allowed to take Chemistry/Physics of any kind. My highschool would do Biology freshman year, Chemistry second, Physics, and then you could AP in one or two sciences your third year. I only had 2 years, and considering how most competitive colleges look for AP credits when admitting students, I chose to take AP Bio my senior year, as it was the only AP credit I would have been able to receive.

Thanks! The AP part makes a lot of sense, I did not think of it that way.
 
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Yep you are right in that regard. I was not allowed to take Chemistry/Physics of any kind. My highschool would do Biology freshman year, Chemistry second, Physics, and then you could AP in one or two sciences your third year. I only had 2 years, and considering how most competitive colleges look for AP credits when admitting students, I chose to take AP Bio my senior year, as it was the only AP credit I would have been able to receive.

Thanks! The AP part makes a lot of sense, I did not think of it that way.
Now that you have explained it in more detail, it is clear that you were under prepared for the sciences entering college, and why. It's really not a product of being "disadvantaged" in the traditional sense, since it's a result of transitioning between European and American secondary schools, but it is definitely worth noting somewhere in your app.
 
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LizzyM

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Disadvantaged is supposed to be about being behind the starting line that everyone is standing on when you start college. Not having taken a year of chemistry, physics and biology in HS would place a college freshman at a disadvantage over other students, IMHO.

BTW, I'm familiar with the European system you've described as I was educated similarly in South America.
 
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Disadvantaged is supposed to be about being behind the starting line that everyone is standing on when you start college. Not having taken a year of chemistry, physics and biology in HS would place a college freshman at a disadvantage over other students, IMHO.

BTW, I'm familiar with the European system you've described as I was educated similarly in South America.

Thanks for helping! I think it's a matter of me explaining it well, so they can understand the situation.
 
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