College: The Worst Part of Senior Year


Hannah Belmont, Staff Writer

Freshman year the idea of college didn’t phase me. It was far away and something that I felt would take years for me to get to.

Sophomore year I started to tour a few colleges. Nothing stressful. I was deep into the years of high school and wasn’t too worried about it yet.

Junior year approached and the ACT’s, college tours, and thoughts of what I might want to study flooded my life. They are distinct rough drafts, well, besides the ACT with its permanent scores, yet nothing is set in stone, and I don’t feel the pressure to decide who I am going to be. I felt safe, comfortable, and consumed in the years of high school.

I wanted to stay like this forever.

Senior year. It rolled around quicker than I expected and now I can already tell it’s going to fly by. It’s becoming real. Everything matters. I have to start making decisions.

I don’t want to grow up.

It always puzzled me how we live our whole high school lives and don’t realize that every moment counts. Our grades, test scores, the impact we leave on teachers, and even our behavior all determine who we are as students and, more importantly, as people. As I apply to college the impact of my high school career weighs on my shoulders.

Someone once told me that your grades are always going to matter from the moment you step into high school. They were right. I look back and don’t regret my classes, but I do sometimes look back and regret not studying for that test just a little more or just doing one more extra credit problem. But in tens years will I really look back and question my decisions? Probably not.

The summer between junior and senior year I started the process of my applications. I came across consistent questions about “How would I be a great fit for the school?” or “How I would add diversity to the school?” I’m a white kid from a suburban Colorado town. Not much diversity here. These questions seemed to stump me and I was confused why. It shouldn’t be so hard for me to find what makes me special.

On top of it all, the pressure of deadlines has hit me like a wall. Juggling school, extracurriculars, and college applications have probably made for the busiest time of my life. But the hardest part of it all was testing. The ACT and SAT consumed my life junior year. I took the ACT three times and significantly improved my score, but I have never learned more about me as a student and as a person as I did in this time. I struggled to raise my score which made me stressed about my college options. It makes me upset to think that many schools compare students based on their test scores because, for me, that was not an actual representation of who I am as a student.

Students are worth so much more than their test scores, and to me that is the part that confuses me the most about college. We are trying to find colleges that best suit our personality but we are treated as numbers and scores rather than people. The people of today should be the leaders of tomorrow.

The process is long, stressful, and feels life changing. In these few months I want to enjoy the process and not lose sight of who I am as a student and a person. I know I am  more than a number on a test. I believe people end up where they are meant to be.

As cheesy as it sounds, everything happens for a reason. Life works out. I’m just not sure I am ready to grow up and become an adult.