The Ivy Coach Daily

July 31, 2019

Teen Jeopardy Winners

Awards in Admissions, Honors in Admissions, Ivy League Honors
The latest winner of the Jeopardy Teen Tournament will attend Columbia University (photo credit: Andrew Chen).

Like many of our readers, we were captivated earlier this year by Jeopardy James and his record-breaking run. It’s not often that the long-running syndicated show breaches mainstream pop culture, but we’re always happy when it does. We love Jeopardy! We love Jeopardy James! …Which leads us to this year’s Teen Tournament, a series that is currently running as an encore presentation this week and next (the same week as Shark Week — talk about competition!). In any case, Jeopardy has been hosting this near-annual special series of episodes featuring young adults for many years now. And just as you might guess, many of the student contestants do quite well for themselves in the highly selective college admissions process. Indeed many of these young people end up matriculating to our nation’s most prestigious universities.

Spoiler Alert: Winner Avi Gupta Will Matriculate to Columbia University

Now of course, winning Jeopardy is probably highly correlated with great academics and test scores, but what college wouldn’t love to brag that their incoming class boasts the reigning Jeopardy Teen Tournament champion? In fact, being a Teen Tournament finalist is exactly the kind of honor that so often pushes students over the edge from just another wonderfully smart and capable student into one that top schools will covet. With this in mind, Ivy Coach looked back at where these top contestants are currently enrolled, and we now have the information we know our readers crave. Drumroll please. The previous Teen Tournament Champion, Claire Sattler, attends Yale University. Before Sattler, the winner was Sharath Narayan who chose Vanderbilt University, while the 2nd place finisher to Narayan, Alec Fischthal, selected Harvard University.

Most Honors in College Admissions Inspire Yawns, With Exceptions

There are certain national and international awards and achievements that top schools really do care about. We think back to the story a few years ago of the amazingly talented and wonderfully warm Jack Andraka, who won the Grand Prize at the 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. He was featured in a segment on 60 Minutes entitled “Boy Wonder” and he also happened to be a central character in the awesome Science Fair documentary released some months ago. He’s now at Stanford University. Hey, if you can get Morley Safer to call you a Boy Wonder, well, you can probably then also get yourself on the radar of lots of our nation’s elite universities.

Anyway, are you curious which honors matter and which ones don’t matter one bit in the highly selective college admissions process? Sorry, National Honor Society members but all that means is you’ve got a pulse! Mazel tov. If you’d like to have a better sense of which honors should and shouldn’t be featured on your college applications, it’s all part of Ivy Coach’s one-hour evaluation. If you’re curious about our one-hour evaluation, sign up for a free consultation to learn more about our services. Oh, and do you happen to be wondering how we were able to find out where all these students went to college? Well, let’s just say even our nation’s best and brightest teenagers still haven’t all heeded our warning of avoiding posting on social media.


Winner: Avi Gupta (Columbia)

2nd: Ryan Presler (Rising High School Freshman)

3rd: Lucas Miner (Rising High School Senior)


Winner: Claire Sattler (Yale)

2nd: Emma Arnold (Rising High School Senior)

3rd: Maya Wright (Rising High School Senior)


No Tournament


Winner: Sharath Narayan (Vanderbilt)

2nd: Alec Fischthal (Harvard)

3rd: Michael Borecki (Bowdoin)

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