The College Process
by Clare A. '23
Ah, yes, it’s that time of the year again. As seniors start receiving their admissions decisions from colleges around the country, the juniors are plagued with the fear of what we call the "college process." When asking friends during my free period about one word they would use to describe the college application process, people said "astonishing", "terrifying", and "scary." I would have to agree - the process can be each of these things. No words can fully articulate the intricacies of this process, but as a senior that has committed to college, I can offer words of wisdom and explain it a bit. Here are some things I learned throughout the process!
It is different for everybody.
Much about the college process is universal - everyone is nervous, eager, and unsure. But it’s also a process that is extremely different for every student. What is right for one student may not be right for the other, so don’t compare yourself to others. Lean on each other and cheer each other on, but respect the privacy of those around you.
Know what’s the right fit for you.
Because everybody’s process is different, knowing yourself and doing your research is incredibly important! Be sure to talk to your family and college counselor about what range of schools would work best for you academically, socially, and financially. SCOIR, Google, and Niche are a few incredible online resources, and the Fiske Guide books are wonderful for learning about different schools and building your college admissions vocabulary.
Talk to your college counselor!
Creating a relationship with your college counselor is essential in this process. Your college counselors are your advocates, cheerleaders, and mentors. They have your best interests at heart and the more that you share with them the more they can help you. Also, they are the ones that send all of your materials to the schools you apply to! So keeping them up to date is a must.
Learn to love writing.
From your personal statement to supplemental essays, writing is an essential skill for this phase. When thinking about what to say, the most important thing is being authentic. Also, your teachers, college counselors, and parents are here to support you! Proofreading is incredibly helpful, but before you hit submit make sure they still sound like your voice. Lastly, start sooner rather than later!
Don’t worry too much!
The college process can be incredibly stressful, but it’s also incredibly empowering and wonderful. It’s important to stay hopeful and believe that what’s meant to be will happen. Any school that you end up attending is incredibly lucky to have you, and good things come to those who wait. It’s not a race or a competition!
The college process is one of the most fulfilling experiences I’ve ever had. I’m so grateful for the support that the St. Anne’s-Belfield community provided, especially the College Counseling Office. I’m so excited to see the incredible things that come out of the younger classes’ processes!