Princeton ‘22
B.A., Computer Science
Princeton International Student interested in computers and the mind.
Features Included


Hometown Yerevan, Armenia
EthnicityWhite Non-Hispanic
First Gen College StudentNo

Results, Essays, and Advice

Waitlisted or Withdrew
  • Princeton University (Princeton, NJ)
  • Brown University (Providence, RI)
  • University of California - Berkeley (Berkeley, CA)
  • University of California - Los Angeles (Los Angeles, CA)
  • University of California - San Diego (La Jolla, CA)
  • Northwestern University (Evanston, IL)
  • Duke University (Durham, NC)
  • Columbia University (New York, NY)
  • University of Chicago (Chicago, IL)
  • University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia, PA)
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology (Cambridge, MA)
  • Harvard University (Cambridge, MA)
  • Yale University (New Haven, CT)
  • Stanford University (Stanford, CA)
Tap/click a school logo above to view essays and advice specific to that school.

Princeton University (Princeton, NJ)

Applied for a B.A. in Computer Science

Accepted and Enrolled Legacy: No

School Specific Essays

Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
         “Poka,” I say in Russian to my mom as I leave the house. Walking in the streets, jamming to Radiohead, I text my international friends in English. Upon arriving at the cafe of my childhood, I talk to the waiter in Armenian and order my favorite dessert: Neapolitan ice cream cake.           I think about it as it gets made—its perfect balance of three flavors: chocolate at the bottom, then vanilla, and strawberry. As I wait for this three-block treat,...
Think about an academic subject that inspires you. Describe how you have furthered this interest inside and/or outside of the classroom.
“I can’t really explain it because there isn’t a word for it in English, but…” is a sentence I get to hear a lot living in a school with people from over 70 linguistic backgrounds. I myself had said it a lot – my parents influenced my linguistic identity by purposefully speaking only Russian to me from when I was born. My younger self eventually learned to speak Armenian, but traces of Russian would haunt my speech and confuse me...
What have you done to make your school or your community a better place?
My school was starting to lose its magic. Not from lack of fairy dust or shortage of unicorns – it was the campus spirit that was dying. Students were no longer attending events, skipped clubs, and few meaningful contributions were being made to our wider community – the small town of Dilijan in Armenia. Discussions, debates: it is the things outside the classroom that make our community what we are – a diverse group of ambitious individuals wanting to make a difference. So,...
Beyond what has already been shared in your application, what do you believe makes you stand out as a strong candidate for admissions to the University of California?
What sets me apart from other candidates is the fact that I have experienced living outside my home universe. While I did not leave my country’s borders, I did move to a new world – the world of United World College of Dilijan, just 2 hours away from home, or, should I say, my first home. I was thrown into this global, open-minded community of over 70 nationalities after living in the mono-ethnic and conservative society of Armenia. As I got to...
Describe an example of your leadership experience in which you have positively influenced others, helped resolve disputes or contributed to group efforts over time.
Two years ago I developed an application which taught coding in Armenian. What made it special was that the programming language itself was translatable, meaning no knowledge of English was needed to learn it. Moving to Dilijan, I decided to push my little program one step further, creating the UWCode initiative. The purpose of UWCode is to create a free multilingual online platform to make computer science education more accessible for non-English speakers. One challenge with this project is that...
Supplemental Essay: “Why us” school essay
654 Words
How will you explore your intellectual and academic interests at the University of Pennsylvania? Please answer this question given the specific undergraduate school to which you are applying.

Students applying to Digital Media Design and Computer & Cognitive Science should address both the specialized program and single-degree choice in their response. (400-650 words)
Dear UPenn, I should say, I am quite upset. You see, I live and learn in two worlds: the technological world of TUMO and the diverse community of UWC Dilijan international school with its over 70 linguistic backgrounds. The inspiring and innovative atmosphere of TUMO was what me interested in programming, tech and eventually machine learning, while the diversity of thought and cultures in UWC made me interested in languages and the human mind. So I had an original (or so...
Supplemental Essay: “Why us” school essay
66 Words
If you are applying to the Trinity College of Arts and Sciences as a first year applicant, please discuss why you consider Duke a good match for you. Is there something particular about Duke that attracts you? (Please limit your response to no more than 150 words.)
Duke Smart Home project incorporates my love for innovation, and through programs like DukeEngage and its UWC community, Duke will allow me to transition quickly and continue learning through experience and service. DukeMakers and HackDuke, on the other hand, will give the opportunity to express myself as a maker. Duke’s flexible curriculum and its many clubs are perfect for my technophile personality and AI interests.
Supplemental Essay: “Why us” school essay
123 Words
What is it about Yale that has led you to apply?
Yale’s Computer Science and Psychology major is a perfect fit for me, as it will allow me to prosper during my undergraduate studies. Along with courses like “Minds, Brains, and Machines” (PSYC 437) and “Intelligent Robotics” (CPSC 473), opportunities at the Computational Linguistics@Yale research group will allow me to explore my interests in technology, language and cognition. At the same time, initiatives like Code Haven would allow me to continue my commitment to the cause of spreading computer science education...
Supplemental Essay: “Why us” school essay
196 Words
Why are you drawn to the area(s) of study you indicated earlier in this application? If you are ‘undecided’ or not sure which Brown concentrations match your interests, consider describing more generally the academic topics or modes of thought that engage you currently. (150 words)
I love Brown’s computer and cognitive science degrees. In addition to the strong foundation in computer science, Brown’s curriculum, through courses such as Building Intelligent Robots (CSCI 1480) and Emotion, Cognition, Education (EDUC 1260) as well as its BLLIP lab will provide me with opportunities to not only fulfill my interests in cognition and AI, but also draw parallels with my love for education and robotics. Brown’s CS for Social Change initiative aligns perfectly with my “technophilia” and commitment...
Supplemental Essay: Time off from school
144 Words
Please tell us how you have spent the last two summers (or vacations between school years), including any jobs you have held. (About 150 words)
During my recent summers I indulged in the different academic disciplines of artificial intelligence: computer science, psychology, and philosophy. I explored computer science by taking part in robotics, computer and data science workshops online, at TUMO, and during the MIT Global Teaching Labs program as well as spent many of my nights working on development of the online learning environment of the UWCode project. Reading “Thinking Fast and Slow” got me into psychology and the mind while the Introduction to...
Supplemental Essay: Unique question posed by school
519 Words
Quotation as a starting point, write about a person, event, or experience that helped you define one of your values or in some way changed how you approach the world.
- You are a sceptic. - Never! Scepticism is the beginning of Faith. - What are you? - To define is to limit. ― Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray When I was 12, I got to observe my little sister Iren grow up from a newborn baby to a toddler. What I found particularly fascinating in this period was her way of learning. She was able to learn a language in months solely by listening to the conversations around her...
Supplemental Essay: Intellectual interest
260 Words
Tell us about something that is meaningful to you and why. (100 to 250 words)
I grew up speaking three languages, but by the age of 13, I actually knew five: Armenian, Russian, English, sarcasm, and code. The last one especially was because of my privilege of living in the capital, where I attended free workshops held by both local and foreign specialists. Even during those workshops, I was privileged. The English-based syntax of programming had terms like “variable” and “function”—that meant nothing to my peers—were familiar to me. The difficulty with foreign terminology...
Supplemental Essay: Time off from school
152 Words
Briefly elaborate on one of your extracurricular activities or work experiences.
My dad would tell me “you might as well just live in TUMO instead of taking that long bus ride”. And live there I pretty much did. Since I was 12, this was the place I’d explore the wonders of technology, entering the never ending cycle of learning, applying, and teaching. I would take a course in cryptocurrency in the morning, work on a drone-building project at noon, and lead an introductory course in robotics in the evening. I would...
Supplemental Essay: “Why us” school essay
241 Words
In 300 words or less, help us understand what aspects of Northwestern appeal most to you, and how you'll make use of specific resources and opportunities here.
Northwestern will give me all the opportunities to prosper during my undergraduate studies. I love Northwestern’s cognitive science degree. With its curriculum including a variety of academic disciplines, what I found particularly interesting are the courses from music and communication studies, specifically “Design of Learning Environments” and “Psychology of Music Teaching & Learning”, I can explore the subject with parallels to education, music, and design. Participating in projects like ModelSim at CCL and its AI discipline, on the other hand,...
Supplemental Essay: “Why us” school essay
306 Words
Why Columbia?
Columbia will give me all the opportunities to prosper during my undergraduate studies. Columbia would provide the environment for me to pursue my career in Computer Science while having the chance to explore my interests in language and cognition. Besides the strong academic curriculum of the Computer Science program, what I find particularly exciting is the Intelligent Systems Track which will allow me to dive into an in-depth study of artificial intelligence. Specifically interested in the fusion of the disciplines...
Supplemental Essay: Amusing anecdote
100 Words
We know you lead a busy life, full of activities, many of which are required of you. Tell us about something you do for the pleasure of it. (100 word limit)
When my fingers aren’t typing on the computer, they slide down the strings of my old acoustic guitar. I am nowhere close to good—the only “lessons” I took have been with my grandma as she played the piano and helped train my musical ear. But it was through these experiences that I got attached to this instrument. Studying miles away from home, the guitar not only helps me relax as I move away from the world of noise...
Supplemental Essay: Diversity statement
238 Words
Describe the world you come from; for example, your family, clubs, school, community, city, or town. How has that world shaped your dreams and aspirations? (200-250 words)
I live and learn in two worlds, just two hours apart from each other. One is my high school, the United World College of Dilijan, the other is my tech community center—TUMO, in Yerevan. In Dilijan, I became part of a global, open-minded community of over 70 nationalities—a great contrast to the mono-ethnic and conservative Armenian society I was born in. As my views were challenged and debated again and again in our clashes over even the most arbitrary...
Supplemental Essay: Extracurricular activity
243 Words
Describe one way in which you have contributed to your community, whether in your family, the classroom, your neighborhood, etc. (250 words)
My school was starting to lose its magic. Not from lack of fairy dust or shortage of unicorns—it was the campus spirit that was dying. Students were missing events, skipping clubs, and few contributions were being made to our wider community, the small town of Dilijan. When I found out that the school was revamping its extracurricular system, I was eager to contribute to it. During the school meeting, one of our teachers suggested that we have a huge...
Supplemental Essay: Issue of personal significance
258 Words
Tell us your most significant challenge or something important that didn't go according to plan. How did you manage the situation? (250)
“One. Two. Three. Launch!” Laying on the ground, not moving an inch, is our drone. Our group of five high schoolers was staring at the plain blue sky with no aircraft in sight. It was an hour before the ArmRobotics competition, one we were preparing for for the past five months. The excitement for our final test drive turned into panic. At that instant, the drone seemed like just a bunch of motors and chips hot-glued to a piece of...

School Specific Advice

More Essays

These essays haven't been tagged by school. Click school logos above to see tagged essays.

General Admissions Advice

How I narrowed down my essay topics
95 Words
I first came up with a list of possible topics, stories, or any relevant things I want to tell about myself that I could think of. I then starting...
My insights about the IB (International Baccalaureate) program
142 Words
You can boost your chances if you market your work right in the IB Program! Universities know it is a tough program to study and allows you to develop a lot of really useful skills for college. It can even place you out...
My advice about getting recommenders
117 Words
Recommendation letters can be very important in the admissions process which is why I recommend starting early. Get recommenders you know well, not ones who you think are relevant to your field or studies! I...

High School Performance

Weighted GPA
(equivalent to 3.90 unweighted)
Top 5%
Academic Performance in High School Steady

Test Scores

Highest ACT
ACT Score Details
Other ACT Scores
ACT Prep

AP / IB Classes and Scores

Details6 classes and scores



ActivitiesComputer / Technology Volunteer, Robotics, Robotics, Computer / Technology Volunteer, Robotics, Computer / Technology Volunteer, Debate Club/Team, Career Oriented, Theater/Drama, Computer / Technology Volunteer

Experience & Awards

Volunteer Experiences
Awards Received

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