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Tips for seniors: managing college application stress

With many seniors having submitted their college applications for the November 1 deadline, there comes a great deal of stress and anxiety for students waiting to receive their letters of acceptance and deciding what college to attend. 

Many students feel their entire future hangs in the balance with a college decision. This period is often stressful for students and families alike. 

However, there are many ways that students and family can take on their college decisions to make it less stressful.

At this time, parents must support their children wherever they decide it is best for them. Some parents may regret not attending their dream school or think they could have been happier at a different school. Nevertheless, it’s essential to ensure that parents distinguish their college experience from how their child’s experience will be. 

When deciding what college to attend, it’s most advantageous to look at it from an outside, unbiased perspective by seeking support from advisers, teachers and college counselors. This individual should be able to provide guidance and emotional support. Talking about concerns and fears can help alleviate stress and give a fresh perspective. 

Students must research their schools thoroughly and gather as much information as possible about the campus, the program, the location and the support services the college offers. Understanding what each college has to offer can help in making an informed decision that aligns with a student’s goals and values. 

“I watch YouTube videos on the pros and cons of each school I applied to,” senior Ava Cohen said. 

Another good way to learn about the school is to reach out to current students, attend virtual college fairs and seek advice from alumni to gain insight. This process will help in making a clear and concise decision on where the student may want to attend in the future. 

Take time to reflect on interests, values and goals. Consider what matters most in a college experience, such as academic programs, extracurricular activities, location or campus size. Students understanding themselves will better help them align their choices with what truly matters to them.

Students must recognize that it is expected to feel anxious and uncertain during the college decision process. Understand that there is no one “perfect” college, and it is more important to find a college that fits their needs and aspirations more than anything else. Students should trust themselves and their abilities to make the best decision for their future. 

More important than anything else in the decision process is prioritizing self-care. Taking care of physical and mental well-being is crucial during times of stress. Students should make sure to get enough sleep, eat well and exercise regularly. 

Incorporating relaxation techniques such as meditation, deep breathing exercises or engaging in hobbies to help students unwind is the best way to make sure their mind is clear when deciding. 

By implementing these strategies, students can navigate the stress and anxiety of college acceptance and decision-making with more confidence and ease. Remember, this is an exciting time of exploration and growth for students, and with the right mindset and support, they can make the most of this journey.

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About the Contributor
Jackson Gentile, Sports Staff
Jackson Gentile is a senior and this is his first year as a member of NCHS Live! Gentile enjoys playing tennis, intramural soccer and likes hanging out with friends.
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