By Dana Zamat
For the elementary schoolers at Coman Hill and Wampus, the end of October means approaching a day filled with overpriced costumes purchased at Party City. For the seniors at Byram Hills, Halloween brings an even scarier costume—walking zombies—costing only countless supplementals and a lack of sleep. Wearing bags under their eyes and limp clothing, seniors’ anxiety is evident. Early decision is approaching, and November 1st marks the deadline.
Upon applying to college, applicants are given a couple of different options: early decision 1 or 2, early action, and regular admission. By applying early decision, the student is bound to go to that college if accepted. Early action is simply applying by an earlier date in order to get the acceptance or rejection before the normal admissions. By applying early action, the student is not required to go to that school; the student simply knows if he or she is accepted or rejected at an earlier date. Both early decision and early action applications are due November 1st for most schools. Most early decision applicants will hear back from the school sometime in December before Christmas break and most early action applicants by the end of January. While the early decision option is good because the student hears early on, a major con for some ED-ing to a school may be the binding contract. For example, even if the student’s family cannot afford to pay for the school or if the student is not fully committed to the programs offered, he or she must still attend. Because many students decide to commit early decision, due to the slightly higher acceptance rate, students often attend the school simply due to status and necessarily out of passion. Regardless, early decision is a binding contract between student and school. And finally, there is the option of regular decision, which are mostly due at the very start of the school year. These students will hear back sometime in the Spring, depending on the college’s regulations.
Because many early decision applications are due tomorrow, many seniors are scrambling to submit. An unnamed senior, for example, states that she “is too scared to press submit” because she knows there are a “thousand other ways to fix her supplements.” Another senior, who has already submitted his early decision application stated that he, “is happy that application is now out of his hands” because now he knows that there is “nothing else he can do about it.” Though both of these seniors have somewhat conflicting quotes, their statements resonate with many of the students here at Byram Hills. Byram Hills students strive for perfection, and unfortunately, a perfect supplement or resume will never really be achieved so students should understand that once they have polished their essays, there is not much else they can do. Though it could be hard to wait a couple of months for December, BHHS students should be proud of their accomplishments and of how far they have come.
And although it is a stressful time for seniors, BHHS students are known for getting into top universities and, more importantly, into a college that suits them. A higher education institute is just that: a higher education institute. Whether it is an Ivy League or a community college, seniors will be accepted and go to the college that is the right fit for them.
So, as scary as the seniors may seem this week, remember that Halloween lasted a day longer for them!