Kesha wrote:"high GPA at mediocre school + studying your ass off for a 760 GRE (general) quant after you score a 710 math SAT in high school (despite being part of IB program), and be white, and yep you're accepted to an engineering PhD program at MIT.
Have a lower GPA than person 1, probably lower test scores, but be a white female? You're in too."
How true is this? I'm in this exact situation. White female, high GPA, mediocre school. I'd like to attend graduate school in either statistics or data science. I don't actually want a PhD; I want an MS. However, I don't want to drop $50,000 on an MS when I can go to a PhD program for free and drop out after getting an MS. That being said, I want a degree from a top-ranked program, and I'm worried about my chances of getting into a top-ranked PhD program, but confident about my chances of getting into a top-ranked MS program. Since I want a top-program more than I want the free tuition, I'll spend the $50,000 if need be.
So basically I'd like to know how much of an extra edge being a white female gives me. Will it really help me be accepted into a top-ranked statistics or data science PhD program?
I'd like to stay in the Northeast, so these are the schools I am considering: John Hopkins, Harvard, Carnegie Mellon, Penn State, Columbia, Cornell, Yale, NYU, and Rutgers.
How would you rate my chances at getting accepted into each of these schools, keeping in mind that I am a white female? Please rate my chances for both the PhD and the MS programs (where applicable). I am providing additional information below for referencing. Thank you.
My strengths: high GPA, expected high GRE scores, president of my university's math club, relevant industry experience (summer internships), good writing skills which should translate into a strong personal statement
My causes for concern:
1-The math major at my school isn't that rigorous: real analysis, complex analysis, topology, etc. aren't offered. (To provide a frame of reference, these are my (expected) math courses: Calculus x 3 (through multi-variable calculus), Probability x 2, Linear algebra, Econometrics, Operations research, Differential equations, Biostatistics, Financial mathematics, Finite mathematics, Life contingencies x 2, and a Senior thesis.)
2-I have no serious research experience. I will be doing a senior thesis next year, but it doesn't involve heavy-duty research.
3-My school is very small, and the math department even smaller. To be quite honest, I will probably be the first student to apply to a math related PhD program in a long time. I am unsure how this will play out in my recommendation letters. I have strong relationships with my professors, and they know me well, but I am worried that they won't write me strong recommendation letters because they are asked to do so very infrequently.
To repeat my question, how would you rate my chances at getting accepted into a statistics/data science MS/PhD program at John Hopkins, Harvard, Carnegie Mellon, Penn State, Columbia, Cornell, Yale, NYU, and Rutgers? Keep in mind that I am a white female.