University Bound: Exciting, Stressful, or Both? 


Ada Reece is excited to be a Mustang for the next four years! Here she is standing in front of the Cal Poly sign in San Luis Obispo.

The infamous May 1 deadline, the day in which all seniors must commit to a university or college of their choice, has now passed for the class of 2022. Many Shorecrest seniors took to Instagram to post their college announcements after months of stress and questioning their sense of who they are and what they might want to be in the future. Now that seniors have hurdled over the intimidating obstacle of making their post-high school decisions, there has been a simultaneous release of pressure, and also a build-up of adrenaline for the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year.

Savannah Fredericks smiling in front of Samford Hall, which houses the school’s administration.

Throughout the school year, the class of 2022 has been enthusiastic to depart from Shorecrest and embark on new beginnings. However, the actual decision-making process of choosing what path to take after graduation was exceedingly difficult for students. For those gravitating towards attending a university, it was considering a myriad of educational programs, financial packages, campuses, dorm options, sports teams, and more. For some students, finding their dream schools was fairly easy after visiting different campuses. For instance, when senior Savannah Fredericks was asked why she decided to attend Auburn University, she said, “They have a really good agricultural college and the people there are super friendly. They made me feel at home as soon as I visited for the first time.”

However, the decisive mental battle that some seniors experienced when choosing where and how to spend their future proved to be very intimidating and stressful. When asked what the most difficult aspect was of choosing which college to attend, senior Ada Reece explained, “The most difficult part about choosing what school I wanted to go to was deciding the size of the school I wanted to go to. Cal Poly is the largest school that I considered and originally 25,000 students seemed like too many. After talking to my friend that goes there, she told me that because it was split into many different colleges that it felt a lot smaller than it was. And, after all of my decisions were in, my choice became a lot more clear that Cal Poly was the right school for me.” School size has been a very important factor in school decision-making. Some students who had thought they’d like to attend a smaller, private college ended up completely changing their minds and attending large, NCAA Division 1 universities.

Lorelei Starr is excited to kick off her college soccer career at Whitman college next year in Walla Walla, Washington!

Additionally, academics played a massive role in the decision-making process, for obvious reasons. Choosing one school that perfectly fits your academic needs while financially working for you is a very daunting and intimidating task. The subject matter of academic excellence even challenged future collegiate athletes by forcing them to pick between the three NCAA Divisions to suit both their academic and athletic preferences. Soccer player Lorelei Starr, who has committed to playing soccer at Whitman College, explained that the most challenging part of making her decision was “deciding between playing soccer at a higher level or getting the education and college experience I truly wanted.”

Rohan Wassink is ready to take on Yale next year!

There were also a few students who had the opportunity to choose between extremely competitive and accomplished Ivy League schools. Senior Rohan Wassink, who has committed to Yale after being accepted into several other academically strong schools, explained, “I decided to go to Yale largely because of the engaged and supportive community I experienced and heard about through my visit to the college and through conversations with alumni. I also wanted to be in a setting where I would be exposed to people who are passionate about pursuing topics all across the board to the deepest degree possible. Additionally, I would say the campus and student body stood out to me as having an extremely welcoming and positive atmosphere.” Rohan is excited to study math while also pursuing his passion for jazz music. Discovering a school that balances personal and academic interests was an incredibly important and difficult decision to make, and yet so many senior Highlanders accomplished that after having two completely modified school years. The Shorecrest class of 2022’s ability to choose excellent schools under such peculiar circumstances showed their determination and ability to adapt.