Decisions & Deadlines: College acceptances and decisions facing Norwin seniors

The stress and joys of choosing a college.

Nicole Tougher and Ashley Cramer


As the end of the school year approaches, seniors face one of the biggest decisions: What will they do after finally receiving their diploma? For those who do decide to attend college, applying and getting accepted is often a long and drawn out process. Getting accepted to college and committing to attending is a massive relief for students. Many students have different experiences with the application process as well as how they decide what school to attend. A number of factors influence students’ decisions including location, family, intended major, athletics, and financial aid. 

     Senior Robert Chappell is one of the many seniors who are preparing for the next step in their future. Chappell, a varsity hockey player and National Honor Society member had a number of decisions to make, but ultimately decided on Pennsylvania State University to further his education. 

      “I’m going to Penn State University Park and am majoring in data science,” said Chappell. “I chose Penn State because I love their campus and atmosphere along with them being a great school academically for data science. It’s also not too far from home which is nice.”

        Location was a major factor for Chappell who decided to stay in the state. Fellow senior Triniti Joy also took location into consideration, but decided to go a bit further than most.

     “I’m going to Florida,” said Joy, who is going to Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona Beach. “I really love to travel, so I wanted to go somewhere different, preferably with no snow.” 

     Joy, who hopes to study Aerospace Engineering also plans to run cross country at the university. The opportunity to continue the sport she loves at a collegiate level impacted her decision as well. 

     Another student athlete that will be continuing their sport in college is Chase Kranitz, who has been accepted to a D1 wrestling program.

      “I will be attending the University of Buffalo in the fall,” said Kranitz. “I knew I wanted to wrestle in college since I was in elementary school. The question was just where. But overall wrestling had a major impact on where I was going to be a student athlete.”

    Chappell, Joy, and Kranitz all had different motives behind their decisions on where to further their education, but all three agreed the process was stressful.

    A recent poll conducted by Norwin High School journalism sophomore Anthony Olshanski found that all 36 senior respondents thought the college application process was extremely stressful for a number of reasons.

       These students are not the only ones struggling with the stress of getting accepted to college and deciding on how to financially handle it; parents are also facing the anxiety that comes with such big life decisions.

      “I’m an only child, so my parents have never done this before,” said senior Carley DiPaolo. “Since this was new for all of us, learning everything was a bit stressful. I had to stay on top of meeting application and scholarship deadlines. If I were to give advice to juniors, it would be to prepare for all of this as soon as you can.” 

Since this was new for all of us, learning everything was a bit stressful. I had to stay on top of meeting application and scholarship deadlines.

— Carly Dipaolo

     Alongside DiPaolo’s parents, fellow senior Kat Garvin’s parents are experiencing this process for the first time as well. Garvin, who hopes to attend Drexel this upcoming fall said their options were limited due to their intended major and that cost played an important role in their decision. 

    “I want to major in animation so the schools I could choose from are limited. My parents and I looked at all of our options and while the integrity of the programs matter, so did the cost. We all agreed it wouldn’t be ideal for me to spend the next twenty years in debt.”

          “I’m so happy that Kat has found a school they will be able to follow their passion at,” said Mr. Bob Garvin, Kat Garvin’s dad. “While that makes things a little easier it’s still very stressful helping to find scholarships and grants to fund college. I just want what is best for them and for their life to be as debt free as possible.”

        While college is the logical step for many students, the process can create a sense of dread. Being able to take the process step by step can help make it seem much less overwhelming. No matter what factors students may have to consider, there is a light at the end of this stressful tunnel.