Pre-college process

By Michaela Wotorson
NEWS Reporter

h, to be a junior. You, yes you, were lucky enough to be a high school student in the most powerful nation on earth, and one that happens to have a failing education system; nevertheless, society expects you to succeed and continue on to higher education, despite the fact that each school has a price tag featuring easily three arms and three legs.Not only will you seek higher education and its $100,000 price tag (Note: supplementary costs will apply), but you will seek it with such determination that you’ve already spent that much and then some, to attend your very special, pretty, independent, very, very private, very, extremely, wondrous $60,000 secondary school, that which you have statistically about a 23% chance of actually liking – 53% if they leave the bagels and cereal out all day.

In most minds, college, is the great milestone that every senior must take on as soon as the clock hits 8:00 on Monday morning the week before the first day of school. This is false. For Mercersburg juniors, the college process is well underway. It begins over the summer. The college counseling office sends you lengthy, informative emails sprinkled with fairy dust and optimism.

“Hey, so like we know you’re only 17 and not really in charge of your life or transportation or bank account, but kindly make a master list of every university ever.” A clear and easy task!

“OH, and also if you could kind of figure out who you are as a human as well as find the money to pay for The Theoretical Dream College so your dreams aren’t crushed once you see its cost.”

With emails like that, you just can’t go wrong. As the process unfolds, it’s astounding how invested I become. It could be my first-generation child stress disorder reminding me at every waking moment of the day that “pain is temporary, and GPA is forever” or that “If the acceptance rate is older than you it’s not good enough,” or it could be the thousand-page book listing every college in North America, including the Caribbean and Central America, that is sitting on my desk whispering “an undecided major is a failed major.”

With each mention of the word “university,” my palms sweat, my eyes get tighter, looking around the room, sizing up my future competition for admittance to The Theoretical Dream College. My mind darts to my resume, wondering how many mentions of middle school Model UN Club and bake sales to raise money for the Starving Kids In The Third World Country That Celebrity X Donates To can make me look selfless and well-rounded, but not in the same way that everyone else does.

To sum it up, the College Pre-Process is a toss-up. And to all the Upper-Middlers crumbling at the idea of another dinner with family you don’t like or conversations with token church grandmothers, remember: it’ll be over soon. In 14 months, we’ll all be at The Now Existent Theoretical Dream College. Happy touring.

Posted in: Editorial, Opinion

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