As graduation nears, seniors begin to question their preparedness for college. From a small sample of the senior population, about 70 percent of seniors feel ill-prepared for their big venture into college. The other 30 percent, however, feel ready to leave the nest and embrace independence.
The most notable change that causes concern is the more demanding coursework. With online learning, it can be argued that students have not learned as much compared to a normal year. Students worry the shift to college will be exceptionally difficult when emerging from this odd school year.
Kato Vandepoele (12) mentions that “We’ve had a whole year of open note tests, and then college will be 100 times harder.”
Throughout our school experience, teachers have emphasized college classes being much more serious than high school courses. Such a lax year has caused students to panic about what they may face in college.
Additionally, Olivia Kilroy (12) says “I feel like high school doesn’t teach you anything about real-life experiences.”
Besides academic fears, seniors struggle with adapting to life outside of traditional schooling. What is taught in a typical K-12 environment, such as algebra and trigonometry, is difficult to apply to daily life. Students feel like they lack the fundamental knowledge needed for success in an adult world.
Not having parental figures nearby can also cause stress. Most students rely upon some guardian for support and guidance, and not having that figure readily available can be worrisome. Those who lean on a close friend to help them may struggle without that company around.
However, finding a group of friends before the year starts can alleviate some anxiety. A support system helps tremendously when facing a new environment such as college.
Cynthia Qi (12) mentions “I have some friends that are going to the same college as me, so I’m not worrying too much about not being able to meet new friends.”
Likewise, those who felt most prepared for college seemed to take numerous AP courses in their high school career, thus emulating the rigorous nature of the university.
Qi adds that “I did mostly college-level work throughout high school, so I hope the transition will be smooth.”
Nonetheless, most seniors still feel the pressure of oncoming change approaching. In the words of Clara Charlton (12), “I have no idea what I’m doing.”