Seniors Suffer Through College Decision-Making Process

Elizabeth Bolin, Staff Writer, Advanced Journalism

This senior is starting to feel tinges of nostalgia as she walks through the halls of the Academy (which, believe me, is a surprise for everyone). However, talk of the future overshadows any bitter sweetness.

Where will our next class of NDA graduates call home next year?

We will be scattered to all four corners of America, all the way from University of Iowa to Iowa State to Villanova to St. Thomas to Madison. I myself am hoping to live in New Orleans next year.

What goes into this decision-making process? HOW CAN YOU DECIDE THE COURSE OF YOUR FUTURE? Well, to be honest, you basically have to guess and hope it works out.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s research, college visits, intuition… all of those factor into the decision, but at the end of the day, it’s not a multiple choice question. There is no “right” answer (but we are all terrified there is a wrong one).

I wrote an article about college applications that details narrowing down schools and applying. What I didn’t tell you is the hardest part isn’t the applications; it’s the waiting game you have to play after they are all done.

Some people are lucky and only applied to a select few schools to wait for. I applied to an outrageous number of schools, and I still have yet to receive the decisions of nearly half of them. Not only that, but financial aid, scholarships and special program decisions take even longer. There are millions of hoops to jump through and consequences to suffer if you are not agile enough.

After you’ve been accepted, your choice is no easier. Take Anna Kaye for instance.

“The most important thing I looked for in a college was one that would push me academically but also shape me and help me develop into the person I want to be,” shared Anna. “It is also super important that I could imagine myself living in that place so the feeling that I got when I went on campus was important to me too.”

Kaye narrowed hr choices down to Madison, Minnesota, Creighton and Villanova.

“I really relied on the “gut feeling” when I was on campus about whether I felt like I could belong and thrive as well as the opportunities the school offered, such as various research opportunities, the size, location and emphasis on athletics.”

This intuition that Kaye mentions has a strong influence on most seniors’ decisions because college is so immersive. It has to FEEL right.

Kaye still has not decided where she will be next year but has narrowed it down to either Creighton or Villanova. In the last week, she revisited both schools in an effort to decide.

“It’s a tough decision, but it’ll be be very nice once I decide, so I can constantly stop thinking about it.”

Believe me, Anna, we feel you there.