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How 8 Applicants Got to College

Graduating seniors from Montgomery Blair High School in Maryland share their college admissions stories

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The journey to college acceptance is one best told by the experts: high school seniors who've just completed the process. Learning how others got into college can help inform your own effort, so we asked students from the Class of 2011 at Montgomery Blair High School in Silver Spring, Md., to relate their experiences, tips, and observations.

[Read college tips from other high school students.]

A short ride from the northern tip of Washington, D.C., Montgomery Blair is a large, diverse, open-enrollment suburban high school of some 2,900 students and nearly even numbers of African-Americans, Hispanics, and whites, with a slightly lower percentage of Asians.

In its program of English for Speakers of Other Languages, Blair serves 285 students from 42 nations who speak 20 different languages. The school hosts two application-only programs: a magnet devoted to science, math, and computer science; and a communications and arts program.

Of the 100 students in the Blair Magnet Class of 2011, most are doing research at one of 21 different sites, from the American Red Cross to the University of Maryland. Topics range from computer engineering and biophysics to nanotechnology and genetics. Some 60 percent of the Class of 2010 enrolled in four-year colleges, and 14 percent went to two-year colleges. This past school year, nearly 850 students took AP exams, and the average combined SAT score was 1714.

[Learn about applying to college.]

Meet eight Blair grads and hear how they got in:

Laura Anthony

Theodore 'Teddy' Bremmer

Robert 'Kit' Durban

Janet Henkai

Sarah McMillian

Eli Okun

Nicole Turchi

Ava Wallace

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