Common App and COVID-19

Common App and COVID-19

David King ’22

Class of ’21 college acceptances.

2020 has brought challenges to multitudes of global citizens. For minority groups and high school seniors alike, many obstacles stand in the way of the future. From the moment the Common App opened in August, the Class of 2021 knew this process would be unlike any year past. Though seniors were unable to visit their possible future home before sending in an application, they gained a significant advantage in the form of optional standardized tests. Senior Erika Chagin ’21 feels the COVID-19 pandemic has introduced many more steps forward than obstacles in the college admission process. “You don’t have to do as many things to strengthen your resume because colleges assume you can’t do anything since a lot of opportunities are unavailable. Also, having classes and other commitments canceled gives you a lot more time to work on applications. Basically, there is more flexibility and leniency,” Erika stated after finishing her applications last week. “On the con side, it’s almost impossible to visit campuses which is vital to understanding the feel of colleges you are considering.” Despite the disadvantages due to the pandemic, it seems as though the pros outweigh the cons. Erika feels especially relieved about the change in the playing field of standardized testing. She says: “the thing about not having to submit tests is super beneficial to people who don’t test well but as someone who does, it makes it a bit more difficult because only the kids with the best test scores submit them so your competition is significantly increased. You’d think colleges would be desperate to admit kids after losing so much money from the pandemic, but this not so. A lot of current freshman have taken a gap year so they will be a part of the class of ’25 so their college experience is not all online and so there is less room for new kids.”

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