Dealing with College Admissions Stress

Nevan Malwana, Staff Reporter, Sophomore

For many juniors and seniors, the process of applying to college is one of the most stressful parts of their high school career. Twelve years of elementary, middle, and high school education, culminate in a few bundles of paper to determine the rest of one’s life. The majority of students apply to their colleges during the late fall and winter season and receive their results around springtime. However, some students opt to take the route of early action or early decision to the colleges of their choice. The few months between the early application deadline and when decisions are released can be some of the most stressful times in a students life. Yet there’s no need to fret, here’s some information about early admission to help ease your stress.

While many point to early admission and decision causing unnecessary amounts of anxiety, there are some obvious benefits to applying early. Firstly, by applying early, it proves to the institution that you are very committed to your decision. Secondly, even if you happen to be rejected by the college you are applying to, you still have the ability to apply to the university in the regular application process if you apply early admission. Also, it’s common for many colleges to have a higher percentage of early decision applicants accepted into their university compared to regular applicants.

“I think it’s [early decision] beneficial to people who are certain of where they’d like to apply; in being possibly admitted early, they’re able to avoid a lot of expenses due to further applications, and additional work in applying to additional schools,” said senior Dylan Gurl.

Is there a clear and obvious benefit to utilizing early action and decision? To many, the answer is no. The primary reason for this? Stress. However, what these critics fail to address is that if one is accepted into college early, the entire stress created in the regular college admission rush is eliminated. Another point that those opposed to early action bring up is that colleges are less inclined to offer financial support to those who utilize early admission. Yet, by applying early to two to three colleges one can compare the financial options offered by colleges to assure that they get the best possible financial aid. The bottom line is, if you’ve done the research and given your decision some thought, early decision or action will end up being more beneficial than regular admission.

“…There are academic, financial, social, geographic and personal factors that all play a role in making a decision to apply early somewhere. Students need to be really sure that they are a good match for that school with regard to all of those factors, and it’s important to approach that big decision like any other big decision: in a very calm, rational, well-informed manner,” said Mr. Huvane.

Another thing to consider to ease one’s stress is that the numbers prove that the higher education industry actually favors early decision and early application candidates compared to regular applicants. According to, a site that tracks college admission rates for various colleges, the colleges polled on their site have shown early application and early decision candidates are accepted by significant margins in comparison to regular admission, some as high as a 65 percent difference in acceptance rate between early admission and normal admission candidates. Nearly all colleges encourage students to apply early decision and action to their colleges to show their commitment and determination to get into their university, so no need to fret, those who apply early are preferred by colleges. And if all this information fails to calm your nerves, remember a Wikihow page on five natural remedies to calm your stress is only a Google search away.