College Counseling is a-buzz with activity. College admission visitors are coming in daily, seniors are in and out for their family meetings and essay reviews, transcript requests are being processed, letters written, and classes taught. It’s probably the busiest time of year, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Club crew, a 50-foot rock-climbing wall, great Indian food within walking distance, and a sink in a dorm room—the list of specific college-wants can be long and perhaps to the outsider, trivial. To students and families that are familiar to having their needs and wants met, expectations can be high and particular (or peculiar!). However, when deciding where to apply and ultimately where to enroll, students tend to use much broader priorities when making their big decisions. We survey alumni after graduation about a lot of things, one being, an inquiry about what most influenced their final decisions. And while Saturday football games, a campus near the beach, great sushi, or a single room might have had some sway, there are bigger ticket items that were leaned on to narrow and finalize matriculation. I share the list of the constant top three responses to assist our present students and families in getting through some of the less consequential variables and skipping to what will be most important when creating a list and comparing colleges.
We were thrilled to watch the 136 members of the Class of 2023 graduate last weekend. Greeting and congratulating them in the faculty line is one of the highlights of the year. It was a pleasure to walk along side them and their families through their college search process. These 136 Auks are attending 70 colleges in 22 different states, Scotland, Canada, and the District of Columbia. They are traveling an average of 420 miles from Archmere to attend college and 29 of them are enrolling at a school no other Archmere student presently attends.
The Season of Celebrations has begun at Archmere and the College Counseling Office is excited to join in on the fun. Tuesday, May 2nd will be our annual College Decision Day celebration (it’s not May 1st b/c of a full day of AP testing). The day will include a photo booth, Mr. Softie ice cream, thank you note writing, and a class photo on the font steps of Saint Norbert Hall! Seniors should wear apparel from their new schools. It’s always a wonderful day!
As we approach Spring Break, we reach the end of the process for seniors, an exciting time of exploration for juniors, and the commencing of interest for a certain percentage of our sophomores. Really a wonderful time of year full of celebration, glimpses into futures, and growth. While the idiom Hope Springs Eternal means that something is unlikely - in this case it’s incorrect. We see it as a turning of the calendar, a time of rightful optimism!
Digital Testing Webinar - Last week’s webinar by Compass Education Group on the new SAT digital testing format was well attended by sophomore and first-year families (the groups first to be impacted by the change). A video of the program will be emailed out at the end of the week.
This is the time of year in the College Counseling Office that you never know what the day is going to bring. Seniors are still getting admission decisions and doing scholarship searches, we have juniors in class which is sparking a lot of questions, and providing CIALFO to sophomores this past cycle has some of them engaging our office. And as spring quickly approaches (let’s hope), all three classes are discussing future college visits and looking for advise and counsel. It’s a fun time of year!