How to deal with college rejections

Staff Writer


This is a rejection letter from college.

This is a rejection letter from college.

So, it’s finally March. For a high school senior, March is the most important month of the year. Although there’s no major holidays, and graduation is still months away, the month of March holds a promise that no other month can: college acceptance/rejection letters. Of course, many schools send their letters before the beginning of April, but for almost all Cal State schools and UCs, April 1st is the deadline to hear back, making March a long and well anticipated month.

Every senior envisions themselves opening up that awaited letter, (or email) and reading the words, “It is our privilege to congratulate you on your acceptance to…” You can imagine all that follows.

Yes, receiving that letter is a dream for those of us a few short months from graduating, but along with those exciting and happy letters, the “biggest fear” also begins to roll in. Rejection letters. Rejection of any kind can be brutal, unforgiving, and all around unfair. But before you lock yourself in your room and listen to Taylor Swift in the dark, remember these few simple things:

1. Life goes on. No matter what problems or issues you face, you can always continue moving forward. And although the swelling feeling in the pit of your stomach may say differently, a college rejection letter will not kill you. You’re still alive, and your life can still hold purpose elsewhere.

2. This isn’t your only option. Even though a specific college didn’t accept you, others still will. The chances of you getting rejected by every college you applied to are very slim. Who knows, your second choice school might end up being everything you ever wanted and more. If you only applied to one school, or got rejected by all your applicators, there’s still no need to panic. You still have COS. You still have next year. You still have trade schools. You still have your good looks. You still have options, no matter what.

3. This happens to the best of us. If you feel like you’re the only kid in the universe feeling utter despair, don’t panic. Millions of kids go through this every year, just like you do. Your friends, classmates, relatives, siblings, and many other students who applied to the same school you did will be receiving rejection letters too. It happens to the best of us, and it happens to many of the best of us. So don’t fret, this doesn’t make you stupid, and it doesn’t make you less adequate than the students who were accepted. It just means you’re destined to be somewhere else, and to share your greatness somewhere unexpected.

4. Nothing is permanent. Whether you confirm to your second choice school, or choose to attend COS, you can always transfer after a year or two. This rings true with any school. If you hate it, you don’t have to stay there forever. Consider it to be a learning experience, and then allow yourself the option to move on.

5. Your friends and family all still love you. They aren’t going to think any less of you because of a lame rejection letter. To them, you’re probably still the smartest kid on Earth.

College rejection letters are a complete bummer, but they don’t have to be the end of the world. Just keep your mind open and stay positive, and create for yourself the type of experience you hope to have.

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