Date of Award
Master of Education (MEd)
Robert J. Nash
Susan A. Comerford
Written in the Scholarly Personal Narrative (SPN) style of writing, this thesis explores my personal experience as a college admissions counselor. It offers a reflection of my own college search and application experience, my perspective on the experience of today's high school students, and my professional experience working within an admissions office. The juxtaposition of these three perspectives alongside scholarly references on higher education, philosophy, and anxiety, provides a full-spectrum view of the college admissions process.
The core topic of this reflection is anxiety, and showing how each party experiences anxiety in the college search, application, and selection process. Other topics such as social media use, technological advances, parental involvement, and self-care are explored as factors that can induce, or reduce, anxiety. The intertwining of my own college story with the stories of current students shows how quickly the admissions process can change, but how the feelings experienced remain similar. This SPN writing was an opportunity to reflect on my work as an admissions counselor and provide a view into an often-shrouded industry. My hope is that my experiences, first as a high school student and then as an admissions professional, and the experiences of today's current students will help to show the commonalities between each party. The understanding of these commonalities, especially shared anxieties, could create the support and understanding that the admissions industry desperately needs. This work provides suggestions and guidance on how to work through anxiety in hopes of lessening the impact that anxiety has on the complicated college admissions process.
Number of Pages
Hecklau, Sarah, "Everyone is Anxious: A Narrative for Admissions Professionals, Students, and Parents, on College Admissions and Anxiety" (2017). Graduate College Dissertations and Theses. 667.