I'm about to head off to do my BSc in physics in Austria (full-time, not an exchange program), as the title says, I'm American. I'd really love to come back and attend a top 10 American school for grad (wouldn't we all), and I'm slightly worried about how an app from an American citizen from a European university would look.
I plan on getting involved on as much research as possible, and I think I'm very well prepared despite having only one semester of university under my belt in the US (hooray for self-study and the internet!). While I don't doubt that the quality of education is the same as a decently ranked American school, I'm concerned with the compatibility of the two systems. The European model is very different than what we use here. An example: The grading is done 1-5 (integers), leaving a large uncertainty when the grades are converted to our 4.0 system. There'd be no way to tell if I passed with a 3.2 or a 4.0.
It's evident than your UG institution makes a big impact on your application, I can only hope that coming from a mid tier EU university won't hurt me in anyway. I mean, Universität Wien does have some pretty notable alumni but that was a really long time ago.
Any feedback is appreciated!