Second Guessing Your College Decision                          by Patti Brugman

By Patti Brugman

            After making a difficult college decision, you might doubt your choice. At this time of year, second-guessing is a popular source of angst for high school seniors. So much is happening in their lives.  So many other students’ college choices seem better than yours, and, to make it worse, after a whole year of total silence, everyone is wearing sweatshirt (despite the weather) to advertise their college choice. It is quite frightening if your “fabulous” school doesn’t seem so fabulous anymore.

            Realize that your decision is right for you because it was based on your personal set of choices and talents. Your parents and counselors helped you see your ambitions, your ability, and price you should pay for college. So if you’re feeling a little down, talk to your friends. You might have noticed that Disappointed Dan is being particularly silent because he didn’t get into the Massachusetts Marvel he was hoping for.  Even though his counselor has congratulated him, he’s still miserable.  This is the feeling lots of kids go through. Help yourself feel better by talking to Dan.  “I’m going to Austin College in Texas,” you can say. “Funny thing is, it’s not actually in Austin.  Where are you going?”  You’d be surprised how much talking helps both of you feel better. 

            These are the times to mentally launch yourself forward. I have said before that any college on your list will work for you because your list was carefully compiled. If you chose College #5 instead of College #3, that’s all right. Going to college is about you and your desire to learn. The campus, the classes, the roommate, the food… it’s all an adventure. Go see "The Avengers." Feel the surge of power and brilliance.  That’s you!

            I happen to know a student who had a tough decision to make.  She was trying to decide between a traditional school and a famous art school.  She chose the art school and is now a bit concerned.  Was that right choice?  The point is, it was her decision.  She’s going to orientation in a few weeks and will be meeting lots of kids on campus.  She'll learn the school traditions, see the program in action, and come home feeling very sure of herself.  Enjoy this time of year, no matter how excited or worried you are about your college decision.

             And Disappointed Dan?  He's not going to be disappointed for long. Even though he won’t be attending Choice #1, many very fine statesmen graduated from his future school. Remember that any school is what you make of it. It's what you discover about yourself that’s important. And after you've graduated from there, what will they say about you?

Despite the spike in the weather, we hope Dan will be wearing his college sweatshirt soon. His college is one of our favorites, (even though it isn’t in Boston.) Smile at him and all your friends.  Encourage them as you encourage yourself. There’s nothing to second-guess there!