Confident Thoughts for College Acceptance Week

Barry Lenson

Confident Thoughts for College Acceptance Week

All over America this week, students are waiting to get acceptance letters from colleges. If you’re one of them, I know about how you feel – you feel like you can finally see the finish line after running a marathon.  Over the last four years, you’ve worked to keep your grades up, taken part in summer programs, done community service work, studied for standardized tests, taken AP courses, engaged in high school athletics, visited colleges, applied for financial aid, worked on applications and application essays – and I am sure that I have left some important things out.

I have felt the tension of this week, both as a college applicant and as a parent. And so even though you are probably worried this week, I would like to offer you a few reasons why you should feel confident about your chances of getting into a terrific college.

First, things are going to be okay. I know that might sound like a feeble reassurance, but it isn’t.  You’ve done all your hard work, and you will be repaid with a good outcome. So look forward to the coming week with confidence. It is going to be a great turning point that will open up new possibilities for your life.

College rejection letters are not the end of the world. (Even though you are probably not going to get any.) If you don’t get into your first-choice college, you just might end up going to a different college that you will love even more. And here’s another reassurance – I know at least five students who went to their first-choice colleges and then transferred after a year. You see, you really can’t know everything about a school until you start to attend classes there.

You have more cushioning than you think. If you don’t get accepted to a college that you really love (even though that is not going to happen), you have lots of good fallback positions. You can take a year off, add some interesting experiences, then reapply to colleges. You can go to a college for a year and then transfer. (Transferring is happening at a remarkable rate in American colleges, in case you haven’t heard.) Or you can take some time to regroup and take online college courses to add skills or explore new areas of study. So remember, you are under no obligation to get things perfect the first time, even though you might think that you are.

You see, there are lots of reasons to be depressurized. Remember not to just look ahead at what might happen, but to look back and appreciate all the remarkable things that you have already accomplished. So dig into your resources of energy for the last time and run through that tape with your head held high.

Guess what? You did it.

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