Admissions Anticipation and Anxiety

Sophia McCrimmon, Editor-in-Chief

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It’s that time of year again; there’s a nip in the air, Christmas carols on the radio, and a hoard of anxious teenagers counting down the minutes to an “admissions status update.” That’s right, it’s time for the first round of college decisions to worm their way into student inboxes, bringing life-changing news or a sting of disappointment. We’ve watched this process from afar in years gone by, gossiping furiously about various Ivy League upsets. This time, however, it’s all too real. For some, the past few weeks have been a whirr of excitement upon receiving acceptance to a top choice school. For others, they’ve been a delightful concoction of disappointment and anxiety.

I wish I could offer some valuable piece of advice for maintaining sanity in college decisions season, but just like any other student clumsily making their way through this process I often find myself at a loss for guidance. I thought I had found personal stability, because I knew I would be happy and successful at any of the schools to which I’m applying. But there’s no way to quite anticipate the sensation of watching friends and classmates receive acceptance to fancy, prestigious institutions; though of course you’re thrilled for them, there’s always a lingering worry that you’ll be the only one left out or left behind. There’s no doubt that if college decisions came out in a vacuum they would be much easier to take. At a school like Maggie Walker, however, college decisions are not only personal but social. It seems like everyone knows within a few minutes who’s been accepted or rejected, adding a tricky and unexpected element to the process for many students.

When I turned to alumni for advice on surviving this weird and stressful window of time, the consensus was clear: a year from now, this will all be a distant memory. On December 16, 2017, we’ll be settled into our college of choice, doing good work and making new friends and (probably, hopefully) getting a lot more sleep. We each have individual goals and dreams and a special path to be excited about. Though disappointment abounds this time of year, it’s important to remember what you really want to do with your college experience and why you’re excited for your own individual path, regardless of how it compares to that of your classmates.

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