Winter Season Can be a Challenging Time for Seniors

Jada Thielen, Staff Writer

For many members of the senior class, the winter season is when colleges are sending their decision letters, which can mean increased stress and anxiety.

Joey Donovan, who applied to Duke University, tells himself to “stick to what you can control,” adding that “you can’t really control if you get admitted or not.” Donovan remains positive and optimistic through the college admissions process, something that many seniors struggle with. He advises other anxious seniors to “trust that you’ve put your best foot forward, and trust in all the work you’ve put in over the past four years.” 

SHS senior Jason Adams shared this advice: “If you’re happy with what you’ve done to present yourself to these schools, and if they don’t accept and don’t want you, then you don’t want them.” He encourages other seniors to still enjoy the winter season and spend time with family and friends, saying there are “so many schools out there,” adding, “you’re going to thrive in one school you like.”  

Senior Michael Gantt has a different perspective on the admissions process. Gantt has already heard from a few of his top schools and has been accepted! He is thrilled with this news; however, he is still waiting to hear from a few more schools. He is pleased that the biggest stress factor is over. Gantt wants other students to “stay positive and trust in what you’ve done.” 

One senior whose college acceptance changed his entire winter season is Shea Morley.  Students may know Shea as the linebacker for the Scituate High School football team, while others might know him as a dedicated student. Morley not only had the stress of the state championship on the line–he was also waiting on the admissions decision from his dream college–Boston College. According to Morley, ever since he was a child BC was his “dream school.”  Morley decided to apply early decision; however, he had no idea when he would hear back.  On December 1st, a friend told him he might hear from BC in the next day or so.  Morley felt both thrilled and anxious, waiting for the BC decision and preparing for the state championship game at the same time.

When a letter arrived from Boston College, Morley decided to wait until after the big game to open it. In the end, it couldn’t have gone any better: “Winning the state championship then getting into my dream school was the most exhilarating experience,” explained Morley. Morley wants to remind seniors that “what you’ve done is finalized.” Morley said, “Know that you’ve worked so hard these past years that no matter where you’re going, you’re going to thrive no matter what school it is.” 

SHS adjustment counselor Jennifer Lopes understands how difficult this time period is for seniors and wants to help in the best way possible.  She has spoken with a number of students regarding their stress over the college application process, and said sometimes even more stress follows after being accepted. Lopes reiterated that she wants to be able to help students deal with these emotions in a healthy way. She encourages seniors to “try to find a balance throughout this process.”  She said there are many opportunities for students, and they need to keep an open mind. Lopes reminds seniors that they don’t need to have everything figured out all at once. “Focus on what is within your control, and make the best decision you can given the whole picture,” Lopes suggested. “Calming activities, breathing, yoga, music, friends, downtime, family, and asking for help” were also recommended.