New Jersey Senior Accepted At 7 Ivy League Schools

College acceptance letters from across the nation are being sent out this week, and one local student has a big choice in front of him after receiving letters from seven Ivy League schools; CBS2's Steve Overmyer reports.

Video Transcript

- College acceptance letters from across the nation are being sent out this week, so imagine if you received an acceptance letter from more than one ivy league school.

- Its left one local student with a big choice in front of him. CBS 2's Steve Overmyer has the story.

DAVID ODEKUNLE: When I opened the Yale admission, it came with a video that said, we are Yale, like Bulldogs, Bulldogs, Bulldogs. I was so excited.

- David Odekunle was just getting started. He opened the rest of his emails, and one ivy league school after another said yes.

DAVID ODEKUNLE: Honestly, I was very shook.

- His journey to eventual ivy leaguer started far from his high school in Bloomfield, New Jersey.

DAVID ODEKUNLE: Growing up in Nigeria, I had so much more adversity and challenges. So being able to use that to not let it deter me from achieving what I want to achieve is what has played such a huge role in my life.

- Because applications increased dramatically, this year's ivy league acceptance rate dropped from 10% to around 6%. David was accepted by seven schools.

DAVID ODEKUNLE: It just kept getting better and better, you know? It's a feeling that-- it's like a once in a lifetime feeling.

STEVE OVERMYER: But it wasn't even the first time it happened in this household. Two years ago, his older brother, Emmanuel, earned the same honor.

You have two sons that were accepted to multiple ivy league schools. What's your secret as a parent?

FLORENCE ODEKUNLE: Yeah, I'm so proud of that. My secret is that I encourage them to be hard working. I always tell them, hard working pills, like it doesn't kill people. When you are hard working, you will reap the benefits later in life.

- She should know. Her and her husband moved to our area, seven years ago, and then both became doctors. What it taught David is that stepping outside of our comfort zone is how we grow.

DAVID ODEKUNLE: It's daunting being surrounded by people who are so different from you. But once you are able to learn more about them, and what makes them special, you're able to add that. It's adding value to your own life.

STEVE OVERMYER: Steve Overmyer, CBS 2 News.

- Unbelievable. What a success story.

- The whole family, right?

- Unbelievable, so what's the secret, right? David suggests students should put more focus on essays in their applications. Make them personal. So the committee can see you as a person, not just a collection of grades.

- That's so true. So true.