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Marni McDowell

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Would You Believe Me?
February 5, 2019
Photo+by+friendshipcircle.org
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The College Chase

Photo by friendshipcircle.org

Photo by friendshipcircle.org

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Photo by friendshipcircle.org

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Photo by friendshipcircle.org

It’s December of Senior year, and you’re either one of two people: drinking hot chocolate by the fireplace while waiting to hear back from your dream school or recovering from your latest mental breakdown the night of a college application deadline. The process of applying to college is stressful, yes, but most students aren’t prepared for what lies ahead of them. Janey Castoe, a Junior at Xavier, witnessed the college application process first-hand from her sister who was a Senior last year. Janey discussed her concerns for Senior year, “I’m scared about what the colleges are looking for in my essays. I know the process is time-consuming.” Niko Tudor, also in the Junior class, shared, “In the past, procrastination got the best of me. I’m worried that the same problem will occur in my Senior year.” Most Juniors are aware of the notorious stress that senior year evokes, yet have no clue what the process of applying to college entails. A good beginning step is to visit college and university campuses in which you have an interest.

Senior Bree Oandasan visits Loyola Marymount University after submitting her final application.

Xavier Seniors have different understandings and perspectives of this process. One Senior, Brianna Bocca, started her college applications at the beginning of October. To her, the work that colleges required was time-consuming and made Senior year one of the hardest years of high school so far. “[The essays] take a creative part of you. They’re nothing like the ones you wrote in English class. It’s difficult to portray your entire self in less than 350 words.” Brianna finished her applications at the end of November and is now using her free time to study for finals.

Senior Kiana Rodriguez celebrates her first acceptance into college

Kiana Rodriguez, another Senior at Xavier, described her time with college applications as a prolonged period of time as well. She wishes that someone would have told her to start the college application process sooner rather than later. “Time constraints don’t help in this situation. The more time you have, the more confident you will be in yourself and your writing.”

As for myself, I found the college application process demanding, yet liberating. Some nights consisted of mental breakdowns, but for the most part, I was able to balance my school workload with my applications. I would recommend getting a headstart on your essays the summer before Senior year. It might appear that your personal statement is the only essay you need to write and then you’re done, but that’s not all. Depending on the number of colleges you apply to, most require writing supplements that you wouldn’t be aware of until you began the actual application. The work can seem daunting and impossible at times, but once you turn in the last application, the waiting game begins. Breathe.

 

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About the Writer
Marni McDowell, Writer

I am currently a senior at Xavier and the captain of Varsity Girls Tennis.  My greatest accomplishment on the team was when my doubles partner and I finished...

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