Ah yes, the leaves are falling, the Pumpkin Spice Lattes are in the hands of many and the sweaters are out of storage. Tis’ the season, for the long awaited college applications process. Every high school senior has been dreading this painstakingly stressful time, and some by bad judgement, are leaving it for the last minute. We can’t really prepare for it, we can only do what we know. And that is panic. So many colleges to choose from, location, size, rank, and tuition are all a major factor directing the Class of 2017 to the college right for them.
A collection of the most prestigious colleges are found in the golden state, the University of California System. A public college system that appeals to so many, that it breaks its own applicant record year after year. More than 5 of the colleges present in the UC System are ranked in Washington Monthly’s Top 20 College Guide and Rankings. The highest being UC San Diego, which holds the 4th spot nation-wide. The UC system prides itself in having a diversity of low-income to high-income students, students diligent participation in community service and a high 6-year graduation rate. All these factors appeal to the global Class of 2017 and send them running to fill out an application. But how many of them are doing it because they actually want to? How many of them are just following their friends, or the stats, or even their siblings and not looking at the big picture? The big picture being, how is this school going to cater for me and my needs, to get me to my realm of success?
As unique individuals of the Class of 2017, we have to start looking out for ourselves. Do not pick a college according to factors that won’t benefit you in the long run. Let’s face it, you and your friend applying to the same college may not be as fruitful as it seems. Breakups do happen and when that fateful day comes you will be left wondering why you’re at this college in the first place. Also, attending a UC fill in the blank, or a prestigious college just for the title, isn’t the smartest idea. The name doesn’t make the college, the students who attend it, who study hard and grow up to do great things make the college. Make decisions with your best interest in mind, not your friends, parents or siblings. At the end of the day it’s going to be your time, your experiences, and most importantly your future on the line.