Deadlines, Deadlines, Deadlines


Kiya Kirkland, Staff Writer

Senior year started out all smiles and sunshine, but around early October, it grew cloudy. Smiles turned into frowns as seniors became plagued with an intense amount of college-application stress.

Our inbox on Naviance, the website used for all our college planning, became flooded with emails of college deadlines, scholarships, and schools to watch out for. Looking through each email one by one, a sense of worry flooded over me and my peers and it started to hit me: I need to get my life together now.

Checking my GPA, I nearly had a heart attack; junior year really did hit me like a brick wall, so I knew that senior year was my last chance to prove that I’m worthy of attending any college of my choice. But where would I go? Should I stay close to home or should I go as far away from Maryland as possible? The latter seemed more appealing to me, wanting to get a fresh start by myself, but realistically Maryland seemed to be the smartest choice. Guess I should start applying for these scholarships, too…

Applying for financial aid and completing as many scholarship essays as possible seemed to be what my life consisted of now. I eat, sleep and drink college. Crazy right? The idea of college seems so fun when you initially think about it, but as it approaches, reality sets in and you begin to really understand that college is no walk in the park.

The cost of attending a university is constantly circling my thoughts. I’ll be eating dinner and I suddenly remember the tuition for Howard University is $43,000 and I nearly choke on my soup. Its times like these that I genuinely wished that money grew on trees.

But thankfully, seniors are not alone with their stressful college journey. School counselors are more than willing to help us figure out our plan and help us execute it. A few weeks ago, I was sitting at lunch and noticed a school counselor with a sign that read “Ask me about college applications.” So of course, I took the opportunity.

We spoke about the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, Naviance, letters of recommendations, and colleges I planned on applying to. Sitting and talking freely helped me genuinely get a better understanding and plan a pathway for my college journey, rather than having my thoughts run wild and overwhelm me.

Senior year at Towson is hard, but not impossible. As our last year, it’s important to persevere through all the essays and keep in mind that we’re almost at the finish line. With the help of staff members and fellow classmates, we will make it past all of the stress and the smiles and sunny skies will return.