The next big step


Cynthia Guerrero

Before the November deadline, senior Desiree Flores looks over the information for colleges that she applied to, such as UCs and Cal States, to review her options. “It can be stressful when you leave everything at the last minute,” Flores stated.

Mireya Navarro, Staff Writer

Throughout the month of November, seniors at Downey High stress over college applications. Though their English teachers tried to encourage them to make college applications their first priority, many waited until the last minute, while seniors had difficulties they had to overcome during the application process.

Along with homework and other priorities, senior Eduardo Preciado learned to balance out his schedule so that he had time for homework, football, and college applications.

Due to a few colleges offering him scholarships, he felt more relief because that was a sort of back up plan.

“With football, you learn to be punctual, and you learn to be on top of things,” Preciado said, “I didn’t really stress with college applications knowing that football is also there as an option. Although football takes up a lot of my time, it makes it less hectic when it comes to college.”

Giselle Meza, 12, had a financial barrier with her college applications. Due to California State University Mentor requirements for the fee waiver, Meza did not qualify. Because she did not qualify, her mom was only able to pay for one application, while her aunts and dad helped her pay for her other three applications.

“I felt like it was unfair that I was not able to qualify for a fee waiver when it [the requirements] clearly shows that my mom’s income is not enough,” Meza stated. “That was probably the most stressful and frustrating part of the whole application process.”

Besides financial problems, other seniors had difficulties writing their personal statements. Although the California State Universities do not ask for personal statements, the Universities of California and some out of state universities and private universities do.

Desiree Flores, 12, procrastinated with her applications and had a difficult time expressing her feelings and emotions on paper; she knew that her teacher was going to read it.

“When Mrs. Overgaauw corrected my draft, it ended up being horrible so I had to change it all up,” Flores said. “I changed it a day before Thanksgiving and I showed it to my aunt during Thanksgiving. She made some changes as well, so I was basically finishing all my University of California applications while my family was having a good time.”

Seniors went through different situations to get their college applications submitted, but the majority of the seniors who struggled with these situations, are the same ones who got the job done. Some seniors have already gotten their acceptance letters while others will get them some time from January through March.