THE COMMON APPLICATION TAKES CASUALTIES
“There’s another writing supplement under Other Information?!?”
“What’s a FERPA? Isn’t that an as-seen-on-TV toy?”
“What do you mean, 650 words or less!?”
Seniors may find themselves full of such questions.
While the folks here at BHS Unleashed may not consider themselves experts, if you’re looking for some sympathetic college advice with little backing, you’ve come to the right place. And if you are looking for soothing advice from a professional, you may want to divert your attention elsewhere.
Seniors have been finding themselves in fits of fury thanks to the Common App, as well as the college application process in general. Not saying that this year’s seniors are suffering more than any others have before, but with the slew of slackers, complainers and procrastinators in the class of 2015, it seems as though they are. The primary concern of many students is that they “don’t have enough time,” and would have greatly benefited from “actually starting sooner than a week and a half ago,” in the words of Senior Bulldog Ben Degler. Perhaps starting as soon as August 1st, the day the Common App was released (not saying that I did, but I did), would be considering jumping the gun, but it is always better to greatly anticipate the deadline than to be treading water trying to keep up with it.
Another complaint of the Common App, or lack thereof, is that a lot of colleges don’t find themselves using it, but rather, using a university-specific application that increases the time it takes to apply. Maddie Speaker, Senior Bulldog, attests that, “The Common App itself isn’t my problem, but rather the fact that most of my schools aren’t on it is where most of my issues come from. But when I do use the Common App, it’s not easy to maneuver.”
What she may be referring to is the tendency of the website to surprise its users with sudden formatting changes and deletion of works that claimed to have been “saved” internally. Joan Buchanan, local college consultant testifies that, “it used to be a lot worse; last year, any italicized phrases entered in the essay were formatted at a whopping 42 pt font, larger than any others words on the page.” Discrepancies in visual layout; quite the nightmare for a young newspaper editor.
If the problems you are having with the Common App are so detrimental to your existence, BHS Unleashed suggests but doesn’t exactly recommend the following:
The point is that whatever you want to do in the real world will not be dictated by how well you fill out the Common App. There will be a place for you, and if your electronic self falls a little short of where you wanted to be, don’t stress it.
You could always go to school for computer engineering.
And while you’re at it, would you mind touching up the Common App for the rest of us?