Once you reach your junior year, your life changes. Not due to the fact that you often take harder classes and have to start thinking about SATs and college, but because of the way people begin to treat you. Teachers, friends, and strangers alike all say the same things and ask the same questions.
“What college do you want to go to?” And if you haven’t narrowed it down you can get, “What type of college do you want? What area? What major?”
Chances are, at this exact moment, any junior student at Miramonte probably doesn’t know exactly what college, exactly what state, exactly what major. The incessant questions only heighten the looming cloud of a student’s future. It increases their need and desire to impress their peers with test scores and possible colleges, and it decreases their ability to enjoy their school experience.
The college counselors and meetings held for students are a great resource, however a student doesn’t want to hear every day about whether or not they are good enough to achieve “good grades” and attend a “good college.”
What exactly makes a good college? Many would say it’s the college’s prestige, their program, their location, their name. But in reality it’s a good college if it is the one that fits you personally. A good college for student A may not be the college for student B.
The point is, that if you are asking a junior what their plans are, you aren’t the only one to ask them that. How many times a junior hears that a week, even a day, is unbelievable and somewhat annoying. There comes a time when the student feels forced to have a decision or an automated answer and they become more of a robot giving out what someone wants to hear.
Ivy League college names being hurled at students faces gets stressful and can make good students (who aren’t necessarily 4.0 students) feel worthless and like their future isn’t going anywhere.
To all adults and peers out there: even if you have gone through this process and understand how it feels, back off. Give students a break. Let THEM decide what’s right for them and what they want for their future. Don’t tell them that their major wouldn’t get them anywhere, that their grades won’t allow them to get into a “good” college, that they need to decide right now. They are stressed enough.