Common Application website crash & the end of the college process

The logo for the Common App website

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The logo for the Common App website

Mimi Osborne, Managing Editor of Arts and Entertainment

2020, to say the least, was a year full of lessons: students learned how to keep themselves occupied whilst under a mandated quarantine, find sources of entertainment in isolation, and, for seniors, how to navigate a rapidly changing college process. In the midst of a semester riddled with chaos and turbulence, the Lake Forest Academy seniors have faced a seemingly endless amount of problems with poise and composure. The college process is infamously regarded as one of the most stressful times in an academic career: sleepless nights, strenuous essays, and soaring caffeine addictions. Despite this, nearly everyone has triumphed over these obstacles and are now towards the end of the college application process. 

After spending months writing essays, pressing the submit button and finalizing your application is intended to be a moment of relief. However, on January 8th, the Common Application website crashed, sending many seniors into a panic fearing that they would not be able to meet the application deadline. 

Senior Calvin Osborne notes on this occurrence as being, “something uncontrollable that I could only laugh about.” Another senior echoed Osborne’s thoughts and jokes that it was, “almost unreal as it came at potentially the worst time imaginable.” Many seniors across the country have expressed their fears and frustrations with the situation through online forums. However, this was not the only instance of the Common App website crashing, as it has been reported to “freak out” every few weeks.  

Osborne, luckily, was able to get in contact with his schools; most all colleges expressed understanding towards this occurrence as there was nothing that could have prevented this crash from happening. Many students, similarly, vocalized their concerns to respective colleges and faced similar outcomes. Colleges, as a Lake Forest Academy Senior states, are “much more understanding this year compared to others. They have gradually become more perceptive towards their applicants, making sure to attempt to mitigate individuals’ concerns on how COVID-19 has affected their specific application.”

Completing the college process is a major accomplishment, and submitting a final application is a momentous occasion. Unfortunately, this past year of stark twists and turns has morphed this occasion from one of excitement to one of incredible stress. Osborne reflects, “having the task of college applications during this unprecedented year of physical and mental challenges is incredibly disheartening, as its outcome will determine the next few years of our lives.”