College admissions are so competitive these days. And I’ve seen my classmates taking on clubs, leadership roles and volunteering — not because they’re genuinely interested in them, but just to look good for college.
I have a lighter schedule than a lot of my peers, and even I often feel exhausted at the end of the week. But I’m really invested in everything I’m doing. And it’s frustrating to be passionate about a group or organization, and have people only there to benefit their college applications. But I can’t fully blame them.
There’s so much pressure from schools, peers, family and even the internet to “do it all.” It’s easy for students to ignore their real interests and just join as many extracurriculars as possible.
Unfortunately, I don’t see this culture changing anytime soon without real change in the college admissions system.
Because right now, too many of us students are burning out. I see it all the time — classmates skipping lunch to catch up on work, running on just a few hours of sleep. Getting into college shouldn’t have to mean sacrificing our mental, emotional and physical well-being.