Zack Boyd ’10 Finds a Good Fit in NC State

This is the 3rd installment in a series following Senior Zack Boyd through the college admissions process. At the end of a journey filled with both acceptances and rejections, Zack Boyd ’10 has decided to attend North Carolina State University starting this fall. Boyd was accepted early action to both North Carolina State University and the University of South Carolina over winter break. After the early acceptances, Boyd chose to apply regular decision to a number of universities and aimed for more competitive “reach” schools. “I applied to some schools through regular decision to see how it would turn out, but when it got down to things, NC State was the most practical choice,” said Boyd. Boyd made the decision to attend North Carolina State University by comparing the many important aspects of each school such as cost, location, size and football program. Boyd constructed charts and graphs with these factors to aid him in his conclusion. Boyd learned of the rest of his college admissions decisions in early April. Among his regular decision applications, Boyd received acceptances from Wofford College and the University of California-San Diego. However, some of Boyd’s top choices, including Ivy League schools, denied him. Cost did not pose a problem for Boyd at NC State, since he received an Army ROTC (Reserve Officers’ Training Corps) scholarship to the university that will cover the full tuition. Boyd also factored in location to his final decision, with the proximity of NC State to his home in Fayetteville, North Carolina serving as another advantage. Boyd was comfortable with NC State after living nearby and having many acquaintances that attended the school. “I felt a strong connection with the school,” said Boyd, whose sister attended NC State as well. “NC State is a larger school with a lot of opportunities, and Raleigh is a great college town,” he said. Boyd liked UC-San Diego, but the college’s distance ruled it out as an option. “San Diego would be great, but it is pretty far from home, and it didn’t make much sense to go all the way out there when I had others [colleges] on the east coast as a choice,” said Boyd. Boyd, Co-Captain of Varsity Football, would like to continue playing football in college. Although Boyd is not a football recruit to NC State, Boyd hopes to be able to play for the team nonetheless. “I will definitely try to walk on to the team. I have had some communication with the coaches, but I know that I will have to work hard,” said Boyd. Boyd looked into being recruited for football, and received offers from Sacred Heart University and Presbyterian College. However, Boyd said he did not believe that the schools were suitable matches for him. “I did not picture myself as a student at these schools, which I think is the most important part of making a decision,” said Boyd. “If you are going to spend four years somewhere, you have to love it,” he said. “I am definitely as glad as everyone else that college applications are finally over,” said Boyd. Boyd faced disappointments in some of the rejections he received and in a few undesirable outcomes to his college applications. Overall, though, he is satisfied with the conclusion and at terms with his defeats. “Anytime you get rejected, it is a personal blow, but my advice is to not think of it like that,” said Boyd. “As long as you keep an open mind, not get too hung up on any specific school, and don’t take anything too personally, everything will turn out fine. There’s a school out there for everyone.” “It [the college process] really doesn’t define you as a person,” said Boyd. “Character cannot be determined by school acceptances,” he said. “I feel the name or prestige of a certain college doesn’t matter. The only thing that matters is that you find a school that you really want to be part of for four years and that will give you the confidence to succeed and make a difference in the world,” advised Boyd. “I am completely happy with my choice,” said Boyd. He looks forward to the numerous opportunities, interesting experiences and new people he anticipates meeting at NC State. Boyd plans to major in International Relations.