We are applying to too many schools


Magdalene Halikias

Common Application, pictured above.

Nov. 1 is the deadline for most early decision and early action applications. Today is Nov. 2, and a lot of seniors are probably feeling a great deal of relief after sending off multiple applications.

Key Word: multiple.

A lot of my classmates are applying to ten, fifteen, even thirty schools. In my opinion, any more than ten schools is just too much. I say the happy medium is between five and ten. Here’s why.

Sending applications through the common app costs approximately $60 per app. If you’re applying to fifteen schools, which a lot of students do, you’ll end up paying around $900 and for a lot of families, this is a huge price to pay.

But, let’s say it was affordable for a family. It is still then an almost unnecessary payment because ultimately one will end up going to one, single school. And besides, before sending their applications most people already have their top school in mind, which a lot of times they will most likely get into. Most of the schools students apply to are ones they don’t even have a genuine interest in.

Let me illustrate with a personal example. I’m applying to seven schools. Two of these are safety schools, three are reach, and the other two are in the middle. With that said, I know which school I want to go to. If I received my admissions letter from Colorado College, I would enroll without hesitation. I can’t even see myself at a few of the other schools I’m applying to.

Obviously, students aren’t always going to be accepted to their top school, that’s the harsh reality. And that’s exactly why we apply to more than one. But still though, why fifteen? Why twenty? I may be wrong, but a lot of people who are applying to more than ten wouldn’t even go to some of the schools they applied to.

A lot of times, they applied for the sake of sending an application. Or because they just don’t know where to go.

I realize I’m generalizing. But this is the case for many of my peers that I’ve talked to.

I actually have two classes with a girl who’s applying to thirty schools. Now, I am in no way condemning or shaming her for that, I just disagree with her reasons for it. She has many reasons, some reasonable, some not, but it ultimately boils down to the fact that she is indecisive.

In life, decisions have to be made eventually. So, if one decides to narrow down their college choices early and apply to few schools, I applaud them. If they don’t and they apply to many, so be it. But they are just making it more difficult on themselves — more essays, more late nights, more stress. Regardless of how many schools you apply to, the college decision will have to be made eventually.