Sometimes, it can feel like quantity, not quality, of extra-curricular activity is what’s important when it comes to college and scholarship opportunities. There’s a lot of pressure on high school students to be a polo-playing broadway-musical-performing charity-organizing straight A student with perfect standardized test scores. It can be tempting to madly seize up any extra-curricular opportunities you can lay hand on during your senior year of high school, just for the sake of a lengthier application.
But, you’ll find, in the long run what matters, and what will really help you in the college application process, is not being involved in every club known to mankind, but finding the things you’re involved with which truly inspire and excite you.
Now, this isn’t to say it’s bad to be well-rounded, or involved in a variety of activities- I myself was throughout high-school, and even to this day, an ever-overscheduled individual. But my senior year of high school I began to take an introspective look at what activities really gave me the most fulfillment, and these things shaped both my college application process and my overall college experience.
For instance, I became highly involved as a member of my high-schools yearbook staff, both writing and creating original material and editing the work of others. This was how I discovered that I really wanted to develop myself more as a journalist- and it’s been instrumental to my decision to major in the fantastic Writing, Rhetoric, and Communications program and my work with The Rambler. I also got in touch with my creative passions during this year of my life- I wrote more poems and short stories, and submitted these to more contests and publications. The satisfaction that this gave to me inspired me to want to spend the next phase of my life somewhere with a thriving creative writing culture- I found this in not only within the Transy bubble, but throughout the Lexington community.
I would advise any high school senior to undertake some soul-searching of a similar nature. It’s all-too-easy to get caught up in the minutiae during the college application process and forget what’s really important here- your ambitions, your goals, and your passions. While one year of high school is certainly not not enough to discover some enlightened sense of true purpose in life, and frankly confusion about life-goals is a symptom of adolescence that we all deal with, it is enough time to find out what classes or activities really makes you happy to get out of bed in the morning. When you know one thing you love doing, you can apply that love to college and beyond.