When Applying to College, Don’t Be Afraid to Dream

My Story

Beginning in fourth grade, my dream was to attend college in California.

Stanford had everything I wanted and more, but I would have happily settled for USC, Santa Clara or UC-Berkeley.

However, when it came time to submit my applications for those schools, my parents and others talked me out of it.

“Do you really see yourself there? Wouldn’t you prefer something closer to home?”

Well, I thought I saw myself there, now that you say that…

When my best friend got his acceptance letter from Loyola Marymount in Los Angeles, I definitely felt a twinge of jealousy and wished that I’d just told my parents that I really did want to apply to those schools.

It’s Your Future

Don’t let this happen to you. Remember, it’s your future, so don’t let your parents, friends, college counselors or even your own fear of rejection hold you back from applying to your dream schools.

If you don’t get in, so what? At least you won’t look back and regret not trying.

I think that my college counselor and my dad had good intentions when trying to get me to pare down my lengthy list of colleges, but unless you really can’t afford the application price, I think that you should apply to as many colleges as you want.

Live Life Without Regrets

I don’t mean to sound bitter because I absolutely love my school — and I may have even chosen this school over some of those California schools, but it would have been nice to have applied and perhaps have had more options when making my final college choice.

(It’s also a wonderful feeling to get an acceptance letter from anywhere, so that’s an added bonus. Plus, you can brag to friends about all the prestigious universities that wanted you.)

Also, my best friend ended up transferring to my college because he didn’t like Los Angeles, but I still admire him for giving it a try. It’s more than I can say about myself.

The moral is: You’re young; live life without regrets.

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John Edwards

John Edwards

John Edwards is a senior at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he is pursuing a journalism degree. Currently studying abroad in Rome, he can usually be found hanging out and studying at his fraternity. He also enjoys running and spending time with family and friends.
John Edwards

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