The college application process can be a stressful time for students doing their best to make their application as appealing as possible to schools they are sending them to.
Extra curricular activities are often seen as essential to getting into the college of one’s choice, making the pressure to be involved in them greater for students during their high school careers.
Although extra curricular activities are very important, Holliston High School guidance counselor Mrs. Carol Kelley said, “extracurriculars alone will not get a student into a college.”
Mrs. Kelley said that colleges look at grades first and that “the rigor” of a student’s school work is the most important aspect of an application.
Although grades are the most important, extracurricular activities are also important as colleges “want to see a student is doing something important in their free time,” said Mrs. Kelley.
HHS senior Ariana Ameli understands colleges “look for leadership” and that extra curricular activities make one look more appealing for colleges.
Ameli, who is Class President, involved in two singing groups, President of the Environmental Club, Treasurer of the Leos Club, and is involved in Destination Imagination, wants to show colleges “I put interest in what I want to do.”
When working on Senior Auction and other big events, she said those have to come first before school, but for the most part school comes first. Balancing extracurricular activities and school work it can be stressful but she said, “I think every student goes through that.”
When a student is choosing which extracurricular activities to take part in, “those that show leadership” look the best to colleges, said Mrs. Kelley, as well as those which show that one is productive outside of school.
The common application which most colleges use to receive applications has a limit of ten extracurricular activities, forcing students who did more than ten to put the ten most important, as well as not putting in clubs they did not truly take part in.
Although extracurricular activities are very important to the application process, grades are always looked at first and take priority.
When choosing extracurricular activities it is “important that students have balance,” said Mrs. Kelley.