“It’s really tense, a lot of people are caught up in the struggle especially now that deadlines are starting to close up,” said senior Costa Willets.
“This particular class tends to be more ‘worriers’ and they want things to be perfect,” said Creal, “In some ways this makes the process more difficult.”
Colleges provide several different ways to apply. According to collegeboard.com, approximately 450 colleges have early action or early decision plans and some have both.
“Every college is trying to secure their freshman class,” said Creal.
One method, early action, is a program that allows students to apply to colleges and universities during the fall to get an early response, usually around December, but they do not have to commit to a school until the upcoming spring.
“[Early action] implores students to get their apps done early,” said Creal.
Willets is applying to University of Michigan, Michigan State University, and Eastern Michigan University, all early action.
“I want to pursue running, so there’s more of a chance to get into the college you want to go to especially from a recruiting point of view,” said Willets. “I just want colleges to know that I’m interested in them and hopefully they’re interested in me.”
Creal said that early action is advised over regular decision. “The best advantage to applying to college is to apply early,” she said. “[Students] find out sooner and I find it a huge relief for students.”
However the most common option when applying to college is still regular decision. Regular decision is usually a specific date in which colleges want all applications in. The date often varies based on the school.
Senior Tela Kabisch is applying to several different colleges, both out of state and in state, including U-M, Eastern, University of California Berkeley, University of California Los Angeles, and Virginia State University. She is not applying early action for any of them.
“I didn’t apply early action because I don’t feel the need to. If I apply regular decision, I think I’ll still get into the colleges I want,” said Kabisch.
Many factors can influence students when they decide what colleges they want to apply to.
College academic reputation, a visit to the campus, and getting a job after college are some of the top reasons from a survey conducted by UCLA on usnews.com.
Residency also plays a role. “If anything I want to be close to my home,” said Willets.
There are also a lot of reasons as to why students should apply regular decision as well. Kabisch is still uncertain about her life after high school. “I’m still really unsure as to what I want to do next year,” said Kabisch. “It’s all still up in the air.”
Creal agrees that there’s a lot of things students should consider. “I definitely think the program influences them. Cost is also very important, as well as campus and the size of the school,” she said.
As colleges applications wrap up their early deadlines, students are finally beginning to feel less distressed.
“The hallways are filled with relief,” said Willlets.