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College expectations cause artificial applicants

From the top valedictorian with the highest GPA to the student with the most community service hours, the standards for students to get into their dream college have increased over the past few years. The standards of what students are required to obtain have been steadily rising to where students find it difficult to achieve. Therefore, colleges should stop raising their expectations on students.

For decades, colleges have wanted students who perform outstandingly in their extracurricular and in academic studies; however, students push themselves to their limits trying to get themselves into the top universities. Due to peer pressure, students join multiple sports and clubs just to compete with one another when applying to universities. According to a survey by the HuffPost, leadership positions are highly encouraged by some of the top universities. Overwhelmingly, students here at San Gabriel High School apply for multiple positions in service and interest clubs to the extent where they are practically striving for a leadership position. Applying for a certain position in a club signifies accepting responsibilities and sacrifices one has to make to receive recognition. On the contrary, students compete for a position just for the sake of acquiring a leadership skill that colleges might notice. Students are certainly missing the point.

It is understandable that college administrators may think that having straight A’s does not define one’s intelligence. Therefore, they look more into the student’s activeness in their community services and school. Yet, the term “volunteering services” is manipulated through students involuntarily attending community events. The ideal student colleges want is someone who is actually involved with their community. However, colleges are not able to interrogate every student as to whether or not they want to provide a change to the society. As an advantage, students who manage to do community services are seen as people who are engaged with their community even though they are solely doing it for themselves. Yes, going to events like 5K walks to fight breast cancer, heart diseases, and kidney disorders is beneficial to the community, but students are merely showing up to events not for the actual support of victims, but for the fulfillment of their club’s hour requirement.

Do not join extracurricular activities that you are not truly passionate for just the impulse to achieve the intangible college standards. Instead of accomplishing something intangible, achieve greater goals that will help others more than yourself selflessly. Nonetheless, colleges should lower their requirements on us students so we can widen our possible capabilities to make our “change” to our society.

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