The College Process for the Class of 2018

Acceptances have begun to arrive.

The College Process for the Class of 2018

Grace Heidinger , Contributor

With college deadlines approaching and some already passed, the Class of 2018 (which consists of 59 seniors) contains many mixed feelings –  from stressed to overwhelmed to excited. Every student is at a different spot in the college process, some have already applied while some still have to finish, or even start, their applications. “When you think of the college process before going through it, you think there’s so much to. However, I’ve found that a lot of it is just asking others to help you. Mrs. Greene for your transcript, teachers for recommendations, and parents for financial aid information. It’s really not as bad as you hear about,” said Brooke Pohlman ’18.

Since SEM is a college preparatory school, the college process begins early. As a sophomore and junior, each girl takes the PSAT which is a practice Scholastic Aptitude Test to get familiar with college admissions testing. In junior year, the college counselor, Molly Greene ’98 starts to talk to students during class meetings and health classes. Juniors are introduced to the general tools, like Naviance and the Common Application, that they will use to manage their college search and prepare for the road ahead of them. These websites help students navigate different information on different colleges and are also used to inform Mrs. Greene what colleges each student is interested in. “Either helping students deal with disappointment or helping students put together a balances college list that includes an appropriate amount of safety schools,” said Mrs. Greene.

College Counselor Mrs. Greene ’98 celebrating the Class of 2017.

By the end of junior year, girls will have completed a college questionnaire, started an initial college list, asked teachers for recommendations and started standardized tests and to have meetings with Mrs. Greene. The college process becomes individualized senior year begins. Naviance, the Common Application and college essays are discussed with the senior class at the beginning of the year. Naviance helps students gather strengths and interests in order to create a plan when it comes to making college decisions.

Throughout the year, over 75 college representatives come to SEM and hold information sessions. Representatives come from as far as University of St. Andrews in Scotland and as close as Canisius College. As the to-do list starts to grow for the college application process, Mrs. Greene is there to support students and help them manage it.”Some people get stressed while others are fine, it’s hard to generalize what is a very personal process because it’s different for every single person,” said Mrs. Greene

Girls apply all over the country and locally. Some popular local colleges include Canisius College, University at Buffalo and SUNY Fredonia. While some non-local schools include Duquesne University, Boston University, University of Pittsburgh, St. Lawrence, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Within the last five years, girls have applied and been accepted into these schools as current seniors look to follow in their footsteps.

Nobody is at the same spot in the college process because each college has its own application deadline. November 1 and November 15 are two early action deadlines, which are non-binding, that were popular deadlines for the senior class. Early Decision deadlines, which is the binding option, also have  November 1 and November 15 deadlines, however, there is another deadline of January 1. Regular decision deadlines are typically between January 1 and February 1 so some girls who decided not to apply early still have some time to complete their applications. Some students also have colleges that are rolling admissions which means there the application is typically open from the fall to the spring and have already submitted them. If a student is accepted after they apply with an early decision deadline, they must attend that college which differentiates it from early action which just allows the student to receive an early response without the commitment.

Class of 2017

Some common feelings among seniors who are in the midst of applying to college are stressed, scary, and overwhelmed. “The most stressful part of the college process is knowing I’m applying to 18 colleges with all different deadlines and waiting to see if I got in. The actual process isn’t so bad but waiting to hear back definitely is,” said Cienna Certo ’18 who has already applied to nine colleges. Maddy Cherr ’18, who has not applied to any colleges yet said,  “I am a little worried considering I literally haven’t done anything yet.” The closer students get to their deadlines, the more stressed they feel as the pressure to submit increases significantly.

On the other hand, some seniors feel excited and relieved as they prepare for the college process. “I might apply to more but I’m not sure yet. I feel happy that it’s done but now I’m worried about the decision,” said Zoe Galarneau ’18. Some girls have already received their acceptance letters. Ellie Cleary ’18 verbally committed to SUNY Potsdam to play division three hockey as a defenseman. “It made it less stressful. I feel so relieved to know where I am going and I am excited for the change,” said Ellie. The feeling of relief is common throughout the girls who have already applied. However, Priya Bommaraju ’18 patiently waits for her December 15 deadline and doesn’t feel stressed. “Unlike others, I am not stressed about the whole college process. I am taking so many APs so my stress is mainly coming from those rather than the college process,” said Priya. 

“All the worry of not getting into college that I spent so much time building up disappeared with the opening of a single envelope,” said Katie Kraft ’18. Of the 35 girls who have applied so far, 11 have been accepted. Just to name a few:

Allana DePaz has been accepted into Hilbert College for the criminal justice program.

Charlotte Long has been accepted into Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Molly Doyle and Tessa Covello have been accepted into The State University of New York at Fredonia.

Grace Heidinger has been accepted into Robert Morris University and Duquesne University.

Katie Kraft has been accepted into the University of Tampa.

When students hear the word “college” some girls feel overwhelmed while others feel excited. The current senior class consists of an even mix of feelings whether it is stressed or excited. Classes in the past have shown a dominance towards the feeling of stress but the current class is rather in the middle. Congratulations to all girls who have already been excited and good luck to the rest who are in the middle of the applying process.

“The senior class is doing good as more than half of the class has applied to a college. There are still varying degrees of people at different steps of the process but everyone is underway,” said Mrs. Greene.