The burden of college application season on basically everyone

As the year soon comes to a close and the rusty orange leaves begin to fall and litter the outside, it isn’t just autumn coming to an end, but the college application season for high school seniors as well.

student stressed by college applications
The season for college applications has just begun, causing severe stress and pressure for high school seniors. (Betty Desta)

It’s a season of busy nights between writing the best college essays, regular school assignments and going and coming from work to home for some students. Stressful can’t even describe how big of a weight this time of year is for seniors. I know I thought junior year was hard and senior year would be like the calm after a storm, but unfortunately it isn’t. 

Now, imagine that stress but almost double, that is the weight on teachers and counselors that no one else considers. They are responsible for transcripts, letters of recommendation, school reports and then the duties of their job too, because for them falling behind isn’t necessarily an option when your education is in their hands. 

Teachers, William Adams and John Snedden, say they can recall their own college application season in highschool, especially as stressful and tiring. Now with the control over other student’s applications including their recommendations and/or reports, the stress is still there but not for themselves.

“I have 92 seniors this year and I’d like to see them all get in their college they want to get into”, Snedden expresses about being a teacher during these times, “When I was writing my own applications, I felt like I had control over my faith but with these guys I don’t know.”

“I agonize over every word that I write, hoping that it’s thoughtful,” said Snedden about his many letters he has to write this year for Seniors, and the weight that it has over him right now.

If you’d like to be that infamous student who asks for a letter of recommendation a week before your deadline, go ahead, but here are two tips from both Snedden and Adams for you to make it easier on your other teachers and counselors, if you are still lost or an underclassmen waiting to go through this right of passage.

1. Get on it early

The two teachers recommend students to start as early as possible to get more people to look over your application and give you insightful advice and criticism, rather than a rushed response for something so crucial for you and your future. You provide more wiggle room for them to get everything done for you by your deadline, and they are able to put their best work out for you to present to colleges.

2. Don’t procrastinate

These applications aren’t like your regular math assignment that you can turn in the day after the due date, with no penalty. Similar to starting early, procrastinating only pushes you back.

“If they need letters, or application things filled in, or help filling in with their own applications or whatever, the longer you wait, the harder it is to get that help” Adam says. 

This season is soon going to come to a close, however, we all need to remember that students aren’t the only participants in these moments, and that there are others carrying similar stress to others. Ultimately though, you are responsible for your college application when you are a senior and must be lenient to those assisting you with it at the end.