College Application Season Complete


Brandon Chan, Staff Writer

Over these past few months, seniors all around the country have been busily preparing countless supplemental essays and refining their applications in hopes of getting accepted into their dream college. Whether it’s applying to an Ivy League school or a small liberal arts college, this process is incredibly tiring and time-consuming. However, as the calendar flips to a new year, most college applications will be complete and the stress that comes along with it will be lessened.

To recap, at the start of the college application season, students were able to apply either early decision or early action. Applying early decision gives you a somewhat better chance of being accepted because it shows you are committed to the university. Since early decision is binding, you must withdraw your application from all other colleges if admitted. This can be a bad thing; for some, indecisiveness or not wanting to commit to one college can lead to a lot of regrets. The problem is that you won’t even be able to see if you got accepted into the other colleges you applied to. Early action, on the other hand, is not binding and essentially is just an earlier deadline date to get some applications out of the way.

“I applied early action to a few colleges that I wanted to go to. A couple were even safety schools,” senior Zachary Green said. “It allowed me to get a feel for the supplemental essays colleges would be asking for. It definitely helped prepare me for completing my regular decision college list, which was much longer.”

After the end of the early decision and early action process on Nov. 1 (students got their results early to mid-December), the University of California (UC) application’s due date was coming right up on Nov. 30 (later postponed to Dec. 4). Essentially, there was no layoff between those two deadlines. For the UC application, you had to complete four essays out of eight essay topic prompts you could choose from and fill out the typical activities, personal information, and grades sections.

“I liked writing the UC essays more than some of the supplemental essays for the Common App colleges because you were given eight choices to choose from,” senior Joshua Yeh said. “It gave me a lot more freedom and creativity.”

Finally, after the UC application was complete, students applying regular decision to private and public colleges out of state had to finish the long Common App application. It is very similar to the UC application in that you fill out your information and it gets sent to all colleges you apply to. For the Common App, you also have to get a counselor and a couple of teachers to write your recommendation letters. Recommendation letters are a very important aspect of every student’s application because it allows the colleges to understand who you are in the classroom. As for the Cal States, the deadline was Dec. 15 this year, and you had to fill out their online application.

If you wanted to attend a community college instead, the process was very similar in that you have to fill out your community college’s online application, provide your transcripts and high school diploma, submit your FAFSA, and take placement tests in mathematics and English.

“I had about 20-25 college applications to complete on the Common App,” senior Emme Chen said. “It took every weekend leading up to the deadlines to complete it because I wrote so many drafts. Hopefully, it was all worth it.”

Good luck to all seniors applying to college this year!


Graphic courtesy of SCOTSCOOP.COM