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Getting to Know Myself One Application at a Time

Getting to Know Myself One Application at a Time_5fbeddfabdde4.jpeg
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Getting to Know Myself One Application at a Time

Getting to Know Myself One Application at a Time

May 1 marks a rite of passage for many high school seniors across America: National College Decision Day, where students who have been accepted to multiple colleges make a decision about which school they will attend in the fall. It’s the end of a stressful, months-long process of filling out applications, writing numerous essays, scouring for scholarships and making hard financial decisions all while still completing the last year of high school. May 1 is their chance to breathe and to reflect on how far they’ve come.

One of the best pieces of advice I got from college preparation workshops was that the application process was very therapeutic.

It seemed like a far-fetched concept at the time. I was only a junior and anticipating a year of paperwork before even getting to college. Now, as senior year closes out, I realize it rings true.

Step 1: Who Am I?

First were the applications. I had to write…about myself. For most people, that’s a hard thing to do. I wrote, rewrote, read and proofread my personal essay countless times.

I learned a lot.

Not only about the way I write, but about the way I am. I got to explore ideals that I held dear to my heart, but never really took the chance to explain. I had an opportunity to talk about topics I would’ve never considered, and learned more about topics I forgot about as I grew up.

I did a lot of reflection on my life. And in the end, I had a better understanding of who I am intrinsically.

Step 2: Where Do I Want to Be?

The second part was choosing a college. Originally, I thought I would just know what college was right for me. I let the months pass by, living in this deluded state, and with each passing day I grew more anxious.

My top choice changed with the Chicago winds, but each time I got closer to the place that I would call home.

As I looked at colleges, I got a better understanding of who I have become in terms of lifestyle. I got to see what things I looked for in a place of residence, like open space and nice architecture. I got a better understanding of what kind of people I wanted to surround myself with, so as to better my educational experience.

Step 3: A Time to Reflect

While the overall process of applying to colleges and choosing a college was stressful, I am actually happy I went through it. I was forced to take the time to reflect and really think about things—something I lacked time for throughout high school.

I grew to understand how I can fit into the world on my own.

Bronson Roseboro is a senior at Morgan Park High School and will attend DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana. An earlier version of this post appeared on the Mikva Challenge Blog.
Photo by Araí Moleri Riva-Zucchelli, CC-licensed.
What Is the Belief Gap?Too often, students of color and those who face challenging circumstances are held to lower standards simply because of how they look or where they come from. Close the Belief Gap →

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