Seniors Struggle With College App Overload!


Rhiann Ashmore

Applying Pressure: “What’s your proudest achievement?” “Describe yourself in three words?” “And do all that in 35 words!” Senior Wire staffer Leah Overstreet is one of hundreds in our building navigating the treacherous – and tedious – college application gauntlet.

Tell us about one of your proudest achievements and what it says about you. Answer the following questions in no more than 35 words. What would you contribute to your future college campus community? Describe yourself in three words. Reflect on your engagement with a community to which you belong.
These words linger in the back of every senior’s brain, crushing daydreams and filling us with anxiety. They are just a few of the many essay prompts current seniors will be filling out this semester. Each calls upon students to reveal some grand truth about themselves, and asks them to miraculously develop some greater purpose. Unless you’ve miraculously cured cancer or literally went to the Olympics, then you might be a little lost on how to properly impress your dream school.
Your average senior might be submitting about six to eight applications in total. This is a highly recommended, a well-rounded amount. Just enough to have two or three safety, match, and reach schools. You can complete these applications in a fairly reasonable amount of time. For those with sanity, I commend you.
As for the rest of us with a violently chaotic self hatred, who decided to apply to upwards of 10 schools, welcome to the realm of agony and hell fire. I happen to be applying to 15 schools, a number that has been met with horrified reactions from peers and college counselors, alike. I am well aware of how ridiculous this is but hear me out: I’d rather apply to 10 schools unnecessarily than go through the stress of possibly not getting into any of my schools.
This sentiment seems to be prevalent among a majority of seniors with an excessive amount of applications. Many apply not out of genuine desire to attend each of their schools, but out of fear of being left without options. “I’m scared that I won’t get into a school that I like so I guess I’m trying to create a safety net for myself,” said senior Javier Manzanarez.
Being suddenly forced to determine our future so young is undeniably terrifying. We still have no idea what we are doing and we’re so worried that we might make an irreversible mistake. Some students combat this fear by over applying. Others limit themselves to schools they feel they have a good chance of getting into. Either way, we all are just trying to prepare for the future the best way we can. Let’s hope we survive to see graduation.