Opinions: A Paige from her book: If I had one wish right now

School just started, and already I am falling behind.

One the first day we have homework assignments, syllabi and endless amounts of paperwork to be signed.

On top of school work, as seniors we have to worry about applying for college.

In the next few months I have to have all my college applications completed. Most college applications I have looked at require an essay and activities list.

I have been involved in so many clubs and activities throughout high school that it seems almost impossible to remember everything for a college activities list: cheerleading, etc…, Student Council, Prom committee, NHS.

Although I have taken several language arts courses, none of them have focused on writing a 350-word essay about myself.  Usually the essays I have been assigned are to write about character development in The Great Gatsby or literary devices used in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn; never about myself.

Writing a personal essay is a completely different style than what I have learned all of high school.

I also am unsure of exactly what they are looking for. I don’t know whether to write a story about a lesson I learned from one of my campers this summer or bragging about my accomplishments.

We do begin to work on such letters our senior year, but it seems too late.  I wish we had written such letters junior year so I could continue tweaking the letter and making finishing touches this year, not starting from scratch.

I have to admit I’m envious when my friends from other high schools informed me they finished such essay’s junior year so they could apply for college in the summer when they had more free time.

I’m a quick study, but even I am not sure I can master the skill of such a new writing style in just one month. I do not feel prepared to write such essays yet, which pushes back my entire application process.

How fabulous would it be if our school was a resource in this process and started preparation for the college application process freshman year.

A required class during either freshman or sophomore year in which we are taught to make an activities list and begin talking about writing personal essays would be extremely helpful and would make students feel more prepared when the time came for actually applying.

If such skills were discussed early on I would feel much more confortable applying for college. After all, the goal of high school is to prepare you for life after high school and I already feel so far behind.