D-Day for high school seniors going to college–May 1–is coming up and I know a lot of my friends are struggling to decide where they want to spend their college career. This makes me reflect on my own experience in picking a college.
I was that obnoxious kid everyone hated who submitted all her college apps waaay early, on Halloween. I had spent all summer working on those apps and was ready to go. The benefit to this was that I had heard back from all of my schools except for one by mid January, which was quite a relief. My early decision school didn’t work out financially, but I was left with quite a few options. As I’m from California and the schools I was considering were all on the East Coast, I took a week off school in March to come and visit, tour, and stay overnight at as many schools I could.
When I visited McDaniel, I shadowed Dr. Mangan’s Creative Writing: Poetry class and basically spent the whole class period crying of happiness and joy at the fact that such a class existed. I was able to participate and offer input on the poems students had brought to share and I was impressed by the quality of the work, and by the methods Dr. Mangan had been teaching them. She made me feel like part of the class, and afterwards shepherded me around to meet other members of the department. I’m taking her Creative Writing: Fiction class next semester and I can hardly wait.
I then met with Dr. Naumov from the computer science department. I had been semi-considering a English-Computer Science double major, but I had a great fear of math. He spoke with me for half an hour and had convinced me that I would be amazing at math if I just gave it a try and I would have no problem with the major. His confidence was inspiring, and I thought it was wonderful that teachers actually took time out of their days to meet with prospective students. I’m minoring in Computer Science and taking his class now.
Additionally, when I walked out of Hill Hall looking for Lewis Recitation Hall, a random student started talking to me and tried to tell me I should be a Political Science major. At the time, I was planning to minor (though now I am a major), and it was great to hear from the average student. I was also flattered that he thought I was an actual student, not a prospective!
Though I really liked many of the other schools, my mum and I kind of looked at each other when we met up at the end of the day and I knew then that we were going to make McDaniel work. And so far, though I may complain about the lack of Trader Joe’s stores nearby, I’m definitely glad I made that decision.