The pressure of college decisions on seniors

Claire Koeppen '19, Supervising Editor at Large

With the college decision date fast approaching, the pressure is on more than ever for seniors to make a decision on where they will be attending next year. As a second semester senior myself, I’m no stranger to this process, and while most of my college decision process is coming to a close, I still feel the pressure to make a decision on where I’m attending next year.

Although I’ve heard from all but one of my colleges and am almost certain about where I’ll be going next year, I still haven’t made a commitment or put down a deposit yet. This can make for some uncomfortable conversations–encounters with family members, friends, teachers and more can quickly turn to the topic of college, as they often do.

The question I’m most frequently asked–without a doubt–is always, “have you decided on where you’re going next year?”. I’m asked this so frequently, in fact, that I feel like I have rehearsed responses to each college-related question that I’m faced with.

Infographic by Claire Koeppen ’19.

Wearing college apparel to school or in public only adds to this pressure. Oftentimes I’ll be stopped, questioned about the college sweatshirt I’m sporting that day and am heckled about why or why I’m considering that particular school. It’s exhausting and repetitive to say the least, not to mention it puts more unnecessary pressure to make up my mind about a school.

However, the questions are only the least of my problems sometimes, at least when it comes to my future. The pressure is on for deadlines as well, whether it be scholarship applications, honors program essays or just the deposit on the college I narrow down to.

Considering the homework, extracurriculars and lack of sleep I’m already attempting to balance, the pressure to make a decision–and quick–

can ultimately be extremely overwhelming and too much to handle at times.

Although this process is a stressful one, I would say that overall, I’m extremely grateful that the majority of my work throughout this college process is finished. The beginning of May may be fast approaching, however; I’m still grateful for what little time I have left to finalize my decision.