Applying to college is a gigantic step in one’s life that a typical high school senior cannot do alone. Seniors turn to their parents, friends, family and teachers to get help on their essays and get advice on what to do. A once excruciating process becomes doable when a senior has someone to help them along the way.
Luckily, my school has a college advisory program (CAP) counselor who was there for all the seniors at my school whenever we needed her. There truly aren’t enough words to explain the gratitude I feel towards Mrs. Stack. The fact of the matter is that without her, I wouldn’t have gotten into college. She works year round and is always available to the students who needed her.
Mrs. Stack starts educating the students at my school about college starting freshman year. Of course the stress of applying kicks in senior year, but by then most of us seniors already had a college list made because Mrs. Stack stressed the importance of it our junior year.
Thank you Mrs. Stack for providing me with a safe place to go when I had no idea what I was doing. Her office became a place of sanctuary, where I could go for advice or when I needed a place to cry. When I was stuck between two schools, one that costed too much and one that was just right, she showed me the facts and helped me face them.
Not only did she give me financial advice on college, but she also read all my essays. Every paper I got back marked with red pen made my college essays that much better. She helped me make better choices and become a better writer.
Lastly, Stack helped me with scholarships. She created a Facebook page to pile with scholarship information for anyone who was interested. I took advantage of this, and it helped me tremendously with the cost of college. In fact, even after I’ve graduated I still use the Facebook page to guide me.
Honestly, the future is scary and my financial stability in college is scarier. Many of the private scholarships I got are not renewable, so that means next year I’ll have to make up for the gap. Thankfully I know I can turn to my CAP counselor because she is an email away.
This isn’t just a thank you letter to her though. This is to urge all you high school students to take advantage of all the help you can get. You don’t have to go through applying to college alone if you don’t want to. Even if your school does not have a CAP counselor, guidance counselors, teachers, parents and fellow students are always there to help. Applying to college is the most stressful part of senior year, but the hardest part is the financial part of college. Now although getting into your dream college seems like the ideal decision, it may not be the best financially. This is when you sit down and talk to your parents. Make sure to weigh all the odds.
All in all, it is important to know that, “You will grow where you are planted,” as Mrs. Stack says. You will be put where you are meant to be. I learned that the hard way, after crying in her office. In the end, everything will turn out how it should be. Thank you to my wonderful CAP counselor who helped me see that it would all be okay.
Lead Image Credit: Alex Jones via Unsplash