Applying to college in the midst of a pandemic

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Abby Frank, Lead Writer

When it comes to applying to college, the process is stressful no matter what’s going on in the world, but during a global pandemic, it makes sense that students are concerned about what their next steps should be.

The difficulties of this particular situation are especially noticeable with the uncertainty that comes in a time like this, where students don’t know for sure how things will have changed in a month, or three months, or even a year.

“The most difficult part has been having to balance time between homework, testing, and college applications. Everything was cancelled the past few months, which has now piled up,” said Rishabh Patel, senior.

Senior David Butler also said the process is more overwhelming because there is a need to play catch up on everything. “The most difficult part of the college application process was definitely finding an open spot for the SAT.”

With the safety of students in mind, many schools have had SAT cancellations, college visits and tours being switched to Zoom meetings, and college essay tutoring occurring virtually. Unfortunately, this can mean many students are having to be very independent in preparing for college this year, and the resources they may normally rely on aren’t so widely available.

However, many students note that the only real option is to embrace these new challenges and face it head on.

“I think the pandemic has taught me to make the most of what I have. Even though the process is nothing like I expected it to be, I have learnt to be flexible, and I think that’s an important skill to have for college,” said Pooja Khatri, senior.

In choosing to embrace the situation by finding a newfound flexibility, students may come to learn valuable skills that will only help them in their admissions journey. While this is a difficult time for many seniors, it’s important to recognize the life experiences being gained in the process and the unique perspective that is brought with this situation.

Applying to college in the middle of a pandemic is not what anyone expected, and it’s new for students and schools around the globe, but that doesn’t mean it must be negative. This year, there are unique opportunities for colleges and seniors to be innovative in how applications will work for them, and with that, we may see the education system growing and changing to make even better application processes for the future.