College Applications Take a Toll on Seniors

Sometimes, desperate times call for desperate measures. The Warrior’s “In Our Opinion” editorials have always taken on the standard-paragraph form that is characteristic of a typical article. However, the seniors on The Warrior staff have been so woefully stressed and panicked about applying to college that crafting the expected, traditional unsigned editorial was not within their mental grasp. The college application process, with a major deadline passing last Friday on November 1, leaves senior students battling a practically intolerable combination of stress, anxiety, confusion, and uncertainty. But, this process shouldn’t be so mentally taxing. What needs to change? Well, we have some answers. The following are direct quotes from seniors on The Warrior staff about the confusing, the unreasonable, the anxiety-inducing, and the infuriating aspects of applying to colleges.

“It is ridiculous that we are obligated to transfer information between several different platforms (College Board, Naviance, Common App, Coalition, SRAR, etc.) when we are just copying the same thing. I think condensing the application process to only one website would save students from unnecessary stress.”

“Even during my junior year, I was not told to take the first steps including standardized tests until the end of the year. Many students are the first ones in their family paving this path and without proper instruction and direction, students are bound to fall behind, become anxious and confused, and not fulfill their application’s full potential.”

“I do not know how I am supposed to shove my entire personality, motivations, background, and passions into 650 words and a few supplements. It always feels like a part of me is missing or lacking, and as I stress about how to fix this, I wonder why I pressure myself so tremendously to appear–and be–perfect just so I can get an education.”

“Being a senior, all anyone wants to talk about is college. While applying to college is a very important thing in my life right now, I have a life outside of my future university. Applying to college has already taken over my personal life, I do not want it to take over my social life too!”

“Although the counselors have a system in place for informing students and their families about the college application process, every friend that I asked for help when I was confused seemed just as lost as me. Most of what I needed to know to apply to colleges I found out by myself.”

“My earliest application deadline was November 1 and spent my first two months at school focusing on getting my scores and grades sent in on time, as well as filling out the application. I really haven’t spent time with friends or had time to just breathe.”

“It is stressful enough wondering if you will get in, how much money they will give you, what program of study you’re choosing–the least colleges can do is make the application itself clear and easy to fill out.”

“To me, it is completely ridiculous that we have to pay–usually around $70–to apply to a school we may not even get into, never mind attend.”

“There are fees for everything, and it’s not just the application fee that’s costly. You pay for transportation and lodging for visits to show your interest in the school. You pay to take the tests they require, and again when you want to send them.”

“I wish counselors spent more time during our junior year prepping us for what lies ahead. It would lead to a smoother transition and give us more time to plan our future.”