Finding the perfect fit

Seniors reflect on the criteria they used to pick the colleges they would apply to.

Erica Swanson, Staff Reporter

With nearly two months until graduation and exactly one month until the universal acceptance date, May 1st, most colleges have made their decisions regarding admittance. But what brought the college acceptance letters in the first place, was the decision to apply, and according to seniors this was done by a variety of special criteria.

“I looked at size, location, sports teams, academic, how good of school they are, and obviously, cost before choosing to apply to University of Miami, Duke University, University of Alabama, and Rice University,” senior Hayley Lechner said.

Senior Ethan Hammer chose similar factors to look at while choosing the colleges he would apply to. In the end, it came down to the program he wanted to pursue.

 “I had to go over the criteria that I wanted to pick from: proximity, tuition, whether they had the program I want– digital film production, which a lot of colleges do not offer, to decide which colleges to apply for,” Hammer said. “It came down to Truman and Missouri State, because I wanted to stay close, but not too close. Missouri State ended up having a better program for what I wanted to do.”

The majors the school had to offer was a big factor for why senior Brenden Terrell chose to apply for and commit to going to Missouri S&T.

“I want to be a computer scientist and Missouri S&T has a good program,” Terrell said. “Also, it is close, but not too close.”

For finding the right colleges that met her criteria, Lechner did some research beforehand.

“I toured a bunch of colleges. I knew I wanted to go somewhere warm so I looked at a bunch of schools located in the South,” Lechner said. “I looked online, went on their websites, got one of those big books and just looked through them. I would be like ‘oh, I like this one’ and start investigating.”

On the other hand, Hammer did not have to look far to find the colleges he wanted to apply for.

“I didn’t have to do a lot of research for what colleges I wanted to apply to,” Hammer said.  “The two colleges I was picking from had things that stood out to me. From a very early part of the process, I was particularly interested in Truman. Truman had the high level of academics and Missouri State had the program I wanted. It was just a matter of choosing one over the other.”

As for outside help, from guidance counselors, both Hammer and Terrell did not require much assistance throughout the college process. For Lechner, she used her counselor, Mr. Bailey as a resource.

“For pretty much all of the schools I applied to, I had to use the commonapp,” Lechner said. “My counselor had to write a letter for me. He helped me with that and we just talked about what we thought would be the best options.”