College Applications: A Stressful Time for Seniors

Many seniors have been working on their college applications, choosing colleges, talking to teachers, and writing essays, which is a stressful yet rewarding experience.

With early action and early decision recently due, it is a stressful time as many seniors rush to submit the remainder of their college applications.

Throughout the year, seniors must determine which colleges to apply to, research dozens of different schools, and keep track of various deadlines and essays.

The college application deadlines; the early action and early decision recently passed on November 1, 2022 (Credit: Shorewood High School)

“The college process is so hectic,” said senior Danielle Glucklich. “Whether it’s making sure you have everything submitted for the deadline, if your essay is ‘perfect’, or writing draft after draft of supplements, it’s really overwhelming.”

“You must also keep in mind you have to keep your grades up and turn in assignments on time which just adds to the stress,” she adds.

The knowledge that these decisions will significantly impact their future also weighs heavily in seniors’ minds, with so many components of the college process to keep in mind.

“There are a lot of decisions to make that might impact my future. As an art student, the pressure of both the normal application and portfolio stack together. And some schools require more than one essay, which makes the workload heavier,” said senior Teressa Jing.

“It’s been a little stressful being that we need to meet so many deadlines and write multiple essays per school,” senior Michelle Wasserman agreed.

The work piles up with the multitude of essays required. Some, such as supplemental essays, rely heavily on research, while others often need to be proofread and rewritten to near perfection.

Three of the most common college admissions: early action, early decision, and regular decision (Credit: CollegeAve)

“It felt like a never-ending process because each time I would go over [my personal essay] with my teacher, there was always something else to fix,” said Glucklich.

Early decision and early action deadlines were on November 1, 2022, with admission decisions around mid-December. Regular decisions are due from early January to mid-February, with admission decisions anywhere from mid-March to early April, allowing students more time for their applications.

However, with all these decisions and a heavy workload to keep in mind, senior year feels especially daunting for lowerclassmen and juniors. “I am not looking forward to college applications,” said sophomore Valerie Lan. “People become very stressed during them, and it seems to create a lot of tension.”

To lessen the stress of college applications, most seniors recommend students pay attention to time management to ensure ample time to focus on the various aspects. An early start and proper pacing allow students more time to research and talk to teachers.

The process many seniors experience during the college process. (Credit: Quad Education)

“I find most high school students have the habit of procrastinating till the last minute to finish their work, but it will not put you in a good situation in the college application process,” said Jing. “There is a lot of research work to be done, and the essays need a lot more time for revisions than you think.”

“Spread out all of the work and not wait until the last minute. It is super important to make sure you start earlier. That way, you can produce the best work in the least stressful way,” said Wasserman.

Despite the stress and workload that comes with the college process, seniors still often find it a rewarding experience. As Danielle Glucklich said, “It’s exciting to be applying to college, and it’s crazy to think that this is the application that will determine my future for the next four years.”