The 2021-2022 school year is already underway, and seniors are officially starting the college application process.
Twelfth grade guidance counselor Pamela Bobinski has been reaching out to students to help them efficiently create their applications. She said, “I want to encourage every step of the way in meeting their own personal goals by the end of the year. So, a lot of blasting information out and trying to pull them in with any questions they might have.”
Seniors have already started this process, and senior Maya Webb thinks they’ve made great headway so far. Webb, who’s applied to three colleges, said, “One of the greatest choices I made is to start early. My parents made me make a list of school choices halfway through my sophomore year and while it seemed pointless, it came so much faster than I expected,” she said.
As there is a lot of dedication to college applications, figuring out the basics first is what the counselors suggest for the start of your senior year. Bobinski said, “I would encourage students to begin with a common app and start with the comment app profile section. Then, from that point determine the other college applications that they would need to be working on.”
Even though college applications are a long process, student-athletes have to balance trying to get committed for a sport and get accepted into their college choices.
Senior softball player Lindsey Urban has started her college search and incorporated recruitment into the mix. “I have spoken to a few college coaches and scheduled visits to the campuses that include meetings with the coaches. Staying organized and setting personal deadlines for myself will be crucial for getting everything done,” she said.
As there is a step-by-step process for applying to colleges, according to Bobinski, there are some challenges that students face. Bobinski said, “The biggest areas that we have seen kids struggle with are going to be the personal essay and any additional supplemental essays that they would have to wait for their colleges. It would also be confirming letters of recommendation and the third would be the ACT/SAT test scores and making sure everything gets turned in.”
Webb also had trouble with this requirement since she is applying to multiple colleges early. “Getting my transcripts and letters of recommendation was definitely the hardest because they both come at different times and I’m doing early decisions for multiple colleges,” she said.
Even though the student-athlete college process is lengthy, Urban thinks it takes a big weight off of shoulders to find a school that truly fits your needs. “Going on tours and researching through colleges’ websites really helped me make my final decision on colleges and motivated me to keep going through with the process,” Urban said.
Webb has also visited colleges and conducted research. “I was lucky enough to go on tours over the summer to all my choices so I could see how I liked them and the environment and I could imagine myself at all of them,” she said.
All in all, Bobinski wants all of her seniors to succeed even if college isn’t a specified choice. She said, “I think when a student starts early enough to start exploring and learning, seeing what’s out there, connecting with professionals in the community and getting on college campuses—learning of all the other experiences if it’s not going to be college—the trade union and all the different possibilities out there, it’s just start early and then build that confidence along the way.”