Class of 2023 faces struggles applying to colleges


Photo by Audrey Kercher '23.

As the Nov. 1 early deadline for college applications approaches, seniors fit college visits into their schedule. Wake Forest University (pictured above) is one college Staples students are visiting.

As the class of 2023 sets out on their college admissions process, they are haunted by the grievances of the past. The senior grade has been through many hardships in their high school experience including surviving COVID-19 for the first two years. However, now that colleges are finally opening up for in-person tours, the current seniors are jammed for time as Nov. 1– the main early decision and action deadline– rolls around.

As seniors must choose what schools to apply to in the next couple weeks, they have been traveling to campuses to get a better feel for schools. Students like Jacqueline Suarez ’23 have been frequently visiting colleges, however this can be time-consuming.

“I am going on a tour next weekend and am going to three in October,” Suarez said. “If you want to go anywhere outside of Connecticut, it’s going to take you a couple days to even go to one school, so that can occupy a whole weekend.”

Whenever you go to a campus you either feel like you belong there or you don’t.

— Jacqueline Suarez ’23.


However, Suarez believes campus tours are also vital in selecting a school, regardless of how much time is spent traveling to the school.

“Whenever you go to a campus you either feel like you belong there or you don’t,” Suarez said.

In addition to catching up on in-person college tours, the class of 2023 also faces the normal struggle of finding balance in busy times.

“The college process is pretty stressful because the beginning of senior year is so busy with balancing school work and college apps,” Meredith Mulhern ’23 said. ”But I have made time for my friends and free time on the weekends.” 

On a more positive note, students believe that Covid-19 has actually helped some aspects of the college process. Schools have moved to test-optional admissions because the virus limits some from taking the standardized tests, which allows colleges to view an application holistically instead of focusing on one test, according to NBC News. The article continues to explain how a test optional approach to college admissions is more fair for low-income or first generation students that might not have the same resources to succeed on these standardized tests as students from wealthier backgrounds.

Further, online visits, along with the guidance department providing college visits, is adequate in getting a sense of a college. 

“So many schools have so much more information available on the internet now than they used to,” Caroline Caggiano ’23 said, “so I’ve been able to learn a lot without actually going to that many campuses.”