College Admissions Stress


Julia Engles

Many seniors are currently going through the college application process, and I’m here to tell you it’s no walk in the park, but it is manageable. Whether you choose to apply early action, regular decision, or any of the variants, deadlines seem to be approaching at an alarming rate. You’ll be given advice from nearly everyone in your life about what you should be doing to prepare yourself, but here I’ll give you reliable advice to guide you through the process 

First and foremost, the earlier you start thinking of what colleges you’re interested in, the earlier you can compile a solid list of where you plan to apply. Ideally, you should start seriously researching colleges and narrowing your list junior year. However, if you’re a senior and still haven’t decided on your top colleges, fret not, there’s still time; you just have to work faster so you don’t miss any deadlines. Nothing is worse than finding the perfect school and then realizing their application is closed.  

At this point, there’s not much you can do to significantly improve your GPA, but what you can do to improve your standing in college admissions is your SAT/ACT scores. Even if your grades have been less than stellar, having high standardized test scores could be your opportunity to woo the college admissions officers and show them your potential.  

When asked about how to compensate for a low GPA, college admissions counselor Lauren Weston stated, “SAT scores are your chance to redeem yourself. Also don’t be afraid to reach out to admissions counselors, or maybe even consider starting out at CCBC”. 

If you haven’t heard of the Common Application before, you need to, because it can save you so much time and stress. The Common Application is a website and mobile app that over 900 colleges are members of, and, essentially, it saves you time, so you don’t have to fill out multiple applications with the same basic information.  

A less common, but still important site to remember is the Coalition App. Not as many universities may use it, but it is still definitely worth mentioning. It’s also important toPOS know that some colleges, like Towson University, have direct applications through their site, so make sure you know what sites you need to be using.  

 Ms. Weston discussed various senior topics of importance and she gave great insight into how to prioritize.  

“Don’t give up on your grades just because you’re a senior” Ms. Weston replied when asked what’s most important to remember as a senior. This is most colleges will request midyear grade reports or even final senior report cards, and it’s important to remember that colleges can revoke acceptance if you decided to slack off.  

Most importantly, you need to remember to stay calm. It is a stressful process, but you won’t be productive if you’re overworking yourself and constantly stressed. Ms. Weston suggests you, “sit down with a counselor to help create a list of colleges you’re applying to and always know that everything is going to work out how it’s supposed to”.  

You can only do what you can, so look at the big picture, take a year or two at CCBC if need be, and get started on those applications!