As a member of our youth, and occasionally pessimistic society, teens regularly admit to the corrupt mess of the college process. The heavy amounts of stress weigh down the hopes of a bright future as many motivations, and grade point average, declines. Of course this is where our assigned counselors take action. Or should I say, attempt to. Not to bash on counselors, they are highly trained and qualified for what they do, however, as trained as they may be they don't seem to know any better than I do on what to do. Any questions asked to these professionals are almost vague and not necessarily assuring to our situations. Of course, not everyone can be hand held, but hopefully most can at least get some direction.
Many of my counselors have little to no idea who I, their student, even am. I am a number, an unknown, another student on their attendance list. I understand that teachers have hundreds of students, and sometimes are not familiar with them, however, their job is more teaching and education based compared to social interaction and attention to students lives. The downside is that our counselors are a huge and vital part of our college application process. Whether it be from college recommendations or application information, their input is necessary for your success. As a student, my question is how to engage in interaction with a counselor that I see less often than a teacher.
Again, this is not a "counselor bashing session" because I can acknowledge that we both share a common enemy, the process itself. It's tedious and almost unnecessary. First is finding a school that fits you. Whether it be personality based, location, academic, or financially. College is very different from high school considering the obvious fact that you get to choose your own path from here on out. Simply finding a college that fits you is work itself. College tours, mailed brochures, and constant emails from various schools persuade students daily. For many, their choice is almost always financially based. Location being a factor, and occasionally majors not even seriously considered. Students will find themselves pushed in one way or another depending on those around them, also adding to the stress.
However annoying the choosing of a college may be, it is almost nothing compared to the period of time waiting for a college to chose you. Many things get weighed into the life changing decision: ACT/SAT, GPA, Classes, Extra curriculars’, Jobs, Essay's, recommendations, and more. Of course, they don't make it easier. Unfortunately, competition is real, and often ridiculous. Not only do they require this much from 16 year olds, but they expect perfection. Of course there are perfect students out there. But i doubt, they are the majority. Everyone makes mistakes and is flawed in their own ways, and it's almost beyond unfair that one test, or one bad grade could make or break your future. Scholarships refused from lack of community service when instead you were maintaining you 4.0. Applications turned down when you got a lower score on your ACT or SAT when you're time was committed to community service for experience of your major. These situations are growing absurd considering the growing amount of students applying to said schools don't have many other options. Community college is always a second option, however, can be as unappealing to not go to college altogether. This fact is disappointing. But unfortunately future jobs and careers can be tortured from the fact of going to a community school, mostly because professionals look at the school as a way of not making it to a four year school or being unqualified.
The essay portion is yet another disappointment of the application process. Of course, every student dreads the idea of bragging or overegsagerting on minor details of ones life. Community service, mission trips, all valid and up for conversation on regular days. But in the college world, reviewers find the idea boring, drab, and unnecessary. This is terrifying to many students. Few experience serious life changing trauma that can make or break a growing person. Life altering diseases, sickness in the family, or personal issues can make colleges run to certain students. And the idea frightens students. If one doesn't have a dramatic noteworthy experience, teens start to panic and over stress about having the perfect story to alter colleges minds if they do not have specific grade point average or ACT/SAT score.
The terror of college has not always been this way obviously. Of course during the millennial era, college wasn't even always considered, and if it was, qualifications were way lower than our modern day requirements. Parents attempt to understand what their children go through, however it is nowhere near the extent that is shown.
It is unfair, the issues and stress that teens go through for a simple transition into college, however, complaining about the issues have not done justice. Bringing the stress to attention will hopefully show those around us that the process is corrupt and unfortunate. In the near future, hopefully, college could be more accessible and affordable to students. But that dream is distant. With the right amount of motivation, students will find where they belong without stressing over minor unnecessary details. Hopefully, this will spread the awareness to others of the annoyance and stress that college causes, but inspire new goals.