The Eye of the College Admissions Hurricane


A group of seniors sit in the media center and enjoy their exclusive senior food. The first senior breakfast was held Friday September 20th to great fanfare. Image courtesy the WHS Senior Instagram page.

Weddington High School is strongly in favor of students staying involved and pursuing excellence, and frequently stresses the importance of working hard to achieve personal goals. Although September and October may seem like low-key months to underclassmen, the end of summer and the beginning of the calendar school year marks the start of a very important time for many high school seniors: college admissions season.  Both UNC Chapel Hill and USC have an early action deadline of October 15th, with other popular schools such as Clemson and NC State not far behind. Many students choose to apply to multiple “safety”, “fit”, and “reach” schools, resulting in an influx of supplemental essays to write and recommendations to ask for. Between the pressure to stay involved as a senior and maintain a high GPA combined with the initial prospect of making memories during the “BEST school year ever”, it is easy to become overwhelmed. 

Thankfully, Warriors have the privilege of experiencing many long-standing senior year traditions. Mrs. Washington utilizes Instagram to communicate with the senior class (@weddingtonclassof2020) by frequently posting reminders and answering questions. The senior bell allows 12th graders to leave for the day a few minutes before their underclassmen counterparts, and if they have completed all required credit hours and possess the transportation to do so, seniors have the option of “flexing”, or not attending school for a designated period of the day. Additionally, the guidance department hosts Warrior Block meetings with counselors to provide information on scholarships. Naviance can be utilized to add potential recommenders, compare college statistics, and sign up for college visits to the guidance department. 

Many students spend most of middle school and high school composing essays for English and Social Studies courses. By the time the senior year rolls around, writing styles and preferences have already been established, along with an idea about how to respond to a prompt and write using formal language. As of recent years, the two most convenient ways to apply to college have been the Common Application and Coalition for College Application. Both are available online and require an essay. Prompts are released on a yearly basis, with the standard being five Coalition Application prompts and seven Common App essay prompts to choose from. It can be difficult to transcribe a unique and compelling essay in approximately 550-650 words, which is why the WHS guidance department has begun to offer students the option of college essay assistance at a specific table during lunch. If students need help, they have the choice of attending a session to talk about choice of prompt, subject matter, or wording. 

Appreciated by the Class of 2020 as much as, if not more, than the help from guidance counselors is the monthly senior breakfasts, which are typically held on Fridays in the Media Center. The most recent senior breakfast was last Friday, September 20th. Chick-Fil-A, bagels, granola bars, and fruit were served. Attendance is permitted based on a donation of $35 per student to the PTSO to cover the cost of the food. When asked about what she thought of the food afterwards, Senior Hannah Koffman enthusiastically proclaimed that the biscuits from Chick-Fil-A were the best part, which seemed to be the general consensus. As Senior Warriors prepare to win over college admissions officers and guidance continues to provide helpful tips along the way, encouraging reminders like monthly senior breakfasts will motivate students to try their best and achieve their dreams.