COVID Impacts Future College Students

Iqra Shakeel

COVID-19 has impacted seniors applying to colleges, such as having standardized test requirements, the value of college essays and even student decision making. Colleges not requiring standardized tests were more reassuring and less stressful to students since the pandemic. Even though they were not required, many students still took the SAT or ACT.

“I feel like the colleges not requiring the SAT is nice because we do not feel obligated to take one during this time,” Eisenhower senior Aishani Moradia said. “I took the SAT because I felt it is better to have a score than not having one at all.”

For some students, the colleges they want to go to require a score. Having a score also increases their chances of getting scholarships.

“I like how colleges are not requiring SAT scores,” Stevenson senior Emily Brenton said. “It takes a lot of stress off. [However], some of the colleges I am applying to require a score, especially for merit scholarships.”

Teachers know the importance of test scores, but they understand the pandemic has changed the rules.

“Colleges should not require standardized tests because students were not fully educated with the required material,” Ford finance teacher Anthony Smith said. “Students should still take the test to determine where they are currently at with scoring.”

Extracurricular activities have more value this year. Students involved are glad this is happening because they feel that it will reflect on who they are for college applications.

“I was a part of HOSA, Key Club and Project Outreach throughout the past four years,” Eisenhower senior Isabella Goolsby said. “I think it will show more about my personality, hobbies and priorities.”

Extracurriculars this year can help students stand out more on college resumes.

“Being a part of Science Olympiad, HOSA, Swim Team and the Sterling Heights Youth Advisory, I think having extra curriculars is a big part of the application process,” Brenton said. “It will help me mostly because I have a few strong activities that will make me stand out.”

For seniors, the second semester of their junior year did not count towards much toward college preparedness and GPA.

“I was glad because online school was really wacky last year,” Stevenson senior Daria Podgroski said. “Although I did alright, I did not do as well as I hoped for. I was worried it would affect my GPA in a poor manner.”

Students also felt a bit cheated since the second semester did not count much towards their GPA.

“I was disappointed because I was taking a lot of AP classes and I did well in them,” Stevenson senior Bronwyn Weiker said. “My GPA would have gone up.”

There was debate that a grading system could have been provided for students.

“Some students would have worked harder knowing that grades were being counted,” Smith said. “I was doing daily lessons and giving daily grades.”