The student news site of Casa Grande High School

The Casa Revista

The student news site of Casa Grande High School

The Casa Revista

The student news site of Casa Grande High School

The Casa Revista

War Is Over: College Applications Are Coming to a Near Close

Photo by College Foundation of North Carolina

The college application process is an important moment in the lives of high school seniors. As students embark on the journey towards higher education, their minds are filled with a combination of excitement, anticipation, and stress.

For many seniors, the college application process begins with a sense of eagerness and optimism. The prospect of shaping our academic future and pursuing our passions fuels a proactive mindset. This process involves engaging in meticulous research, exploring a variety of colleges, assessing their programs, and considering the social environments each school offers.

However, alongside this enthusiasm, stress can consequently creep in. The pressure to present an impressive application looms large, leading to meticulous drafting and writing of personal statements and resumes. Balancing academics, extracurricular activities, and the demands of standardized testing becomes a delicate act. High school seniors find themselves managing a fury of deadlines, scholarship applications, and recommendation letters, all while navigating the fine line between showcasing their achievements and maintaining authenticity.

“I don’t think there’s any problem with the application process itself, other than the amount of stress it creates, but I do think there is a problem in how students are prepared to tackle applications,” said Phillip Liu, Casa Grande senior and student board member. 

It is no cheap process either. Application costs can range from $40 all the way up to $95. Add this on to the cost of hiring a college counselor, many students find themselves applying to less and less schools, purely due to the price. Opportunities for financial aid have become even more slim throughout the years as well, impacting tuition costs even more.

“It sucks because some schools are only an option to me if I were to get a full ride,” commented Liu.

Amidst the frenzy, rejections become an inevitable part of the process, but high school seniors must learn to view them as redirections rather than roadblocks and recognize that success is not solely defined by the prestige of an institution.

For our fellow Gauchos, there is one application that overlooks all; the University of California (UC) system—including campuses in California, such as UCLA, UC Berkeley, and UC Davis. According to Liu, 92% of students at Casa Grande express interest in going to college, yet only 50% of them actually meet the requirements to even apply. The UC application is no feat to be overlooked, as it has a unique set of application requirements that includes four personal insight essays. These essays play a crucial role in giving students the opportunity to showcase their personalities, experiences, and motivations. These prompts are designed to elicit thoughtful responses that offer insight into the applicant beyond what can be assumed from grades and test scores. Simply, these essays, although tedious, provide applicants with a chance to distinguish themselves in a very competitive pool.

“The essays are tedious, but I think they’re really important because there is no other way for a college to really learn about who you are as a person,” noted Allen Phuong, Casa Grande senior. 

All in all, this process has fostered a sense of community among seniors. Shared experiences and collaborative support systems emerge as students exchange insights, tips, and reassurance. After submitting their applications and eagerly awaiting responses, students are diligently prepared for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. 

Photo by Lauren Ellis
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