Jack in the Box
Though seniors are at different stages in their college application process, all UC High seniors can agree that there is one word to describe the application process: stressful.
For some seniors, the process was taxing because they fell behind the quickly-approaching November deadlines. For others, the college application process is stress-invoking because they are awaiting the results of early decision applications. The worst part for me is being incredibly nervous to send the applications because I’m scared about what kind of letter will be sent back to me.
The intimidation of college applications has made me realize how important all my classes at UC were (and still are). Seeing the printout of my transcript, required to be sent to colleges, was crazy because it showed that my academic performance had been tracked since middle school. All of these numbers together shows what kind of student I was.
The dragging and clicking parts of applications seem like they would be the easiest parts, but they become very tedious when you have to enter the same information over and over again. This is why The Common Application is one of the most ingenious inventions in the world, allowing hundreds of schools around the country to accept the same application and lessening the amount of work involved in applying to multiple schools.
The essays and personal statements in these applications are beginning to show me how much more I have to experience in life. They are putting high school into perspective and showing me that this experience is really only four years of my early life. Writing about hardships and experiences can be trying, for it is often difficult for many to put emotions from impact-making experiences into words. Writing about these emotions is not hard for all people, but for me it’s hard to translate memories into words.
Despite the challenges, I enjoyed writing personal statements because I love to brag about myself. Talking about my best qualities or honors I have received is my favorite part of this process. I loved writing my brag packet, given to my teachers for letters of recommendation. Though it can be nerve-racking to ask someone for a letter of recommendation, I felt proud when handing teachers my brag packet. The willingness of UC High staff members to write recommendations made me feel good about the impressions I made on them.
One of the best parts of this process was the help UC High staff provided. Administration, counselors, and teachers were all so helpful to me in the completing of my college applications. The assemblies organized and the resources that the counselors have put together have made the process that much easier. Teachers helped me edit my personal statements and essays. Mrs. Fallon also helped many seniors, including myself, when she held a college application workshop to answer frequently asked questions about the application process and help seniors with any problems we were having.
The final step to the college application process is the search for financial aid or scholarship opportunities. Though not every student searches for these grants, the majority of students attend college with some kind of financial help. Whether it be though athletics or academics, UC seniors are constantly on the school’s website looking for updates on scholarship opportunities.
The beauty of the college application process is everyone’s is different at UC High. This variety embodies the diversity UC High promotes. Some people may not be applying; some are applying to four-year universities while others are applying to community or junior colleges. There are no two seniors who had or are having the same experience. That is why, when everything is decided, it will be fun for seniors to share their experiences and stories with each other. Until then, all seniors can do is grit their teeth, bite their tongues, and try not to stress too much.