By Alex Stanley ’12
Everybody knows that one student who does everything: NHS, several sports, band, photography club, speech and debate and concert piano.
He has participated on three immersion trips (just this year), is an altar server and is taking five AP classes.
I think it is impossible, and certainly at least impractical, to participate in all of those activities/classes at once, but many students are overloading themselves with activities in order to get that extra edge in the college admissions process.
In this day and age, getting accepted to a prestigious college is becoming more and more important, and “the high school experience” is the first casualty of this epidemic.
Getting into the college of your choice is important, but not at the cost of enjoying your youth.
I am not saying students should not participate in any activities.
I am merely trying to say that students should participate in activities that they enjoy.
Do not get involved in a club or activity just because you think it will look impressive on your college résumé.
Besides, colleges would prefer to see that you were deeply involved in a few activities, rather than having limited involvement on many.
The Stanford University Web site says, “We are more interested in the depth of your commitment and achievement than in the sheer quantity of your activities. An exceptional experience in one or two activities demonstrates your dedication more than minimal participation in five or six clubs.”
Colleges like Stanford have started to realize that students are padding their résumé with a bulky amount of activities.
Many other colleges have started limiting space available to list activities on their applications.
Do what you love and do it well, not what you think will get you into college the easiest.