It’s November 2nd and the College Guidance office is quiet this morning—nothing like the last few days when countless numbers of panicked seniors were popping in to get their essays looked at one last time before pressing “submit.”
The norm around here at this time of year is a barrage of last minute emails, phone calls, and drop-ins from both students and parents—along with an emergency text message or two that often begins, “So sorry to be sending this to you so late, but can you please tell me if I did it correctly?” In fact, the look of desperation on many of the faces of even our strongest students—those applying early decision or early action to insanely selective colleges like the Ivy League and their competitors—is almost more than I can bare!
It seems to me that every year, the more we try as an office and school to create a “stress-free zone” when it comes to college admissions, nothing really fixes the problem. In the end, every Webb student and his or her family knows exactly how hard it is to be admitted into the top colleges and universities. And the media hype doesn’t help; just one quick Google search and an endless list of doomsday articles come into view.
A recent article in the New York Times caught my attention, so I thought I’d share it. It is both well-researched and candid. I know it might add to our collective stress, but I am hoping it doesn’t. That said, the headline is brutal, “What Colleges Want in an Applicant (Everything).” And bolded a few sentences in, “No, it isn’t fair, and likely never will be.” I understand at first blush it isn’t exactly going to make any of us feel soothed and relaxed.
However, I have an important point to make and message to share. At Webb, we often tell our students to face their challenges head-on and make the most of them—simply avoiding what is hard doesn’t make it any easier. I believe this with all my heart. Another thing we often tell our students is this: if there was ever a good time to be at a really good high school with a great reputation it is now! Yes, it is hard. And yes, it isn’t always fair, but Webb students have every possible advantage when it comes to presenting themselves to colleges, from the excellent academic program they have followed to the extensive activities and experiences they have each accomplished during their time here; their stories are heard loud and clear at every college and university to which they apply.
So, please remember these two things: Webb has been at this good work for nearly 100 years. And last: you’re awesome, be happy!
Eshaana Sheth ’10 describes her short film, "The Butter Knife" as "a snapshot of modern, intercultural dating." It has won Best Romantic Comedy at the Los Angeles Film Awards and Top Shorts online film festival so far.
In this fascinating article in The Atlantic, writer Jeffrey Selingo dives into the argument many economists, educators, and work-force development professionals are making today--our education in early life does not seem sufficient for the needs of our 21st century economy. The third wave, as he describes, will be one of continual training and education and retraining. Read more in The Atlantic.
Alumni, family and friends are invited to join Head of Schools Taylor Stockdale and special guests for three events this April in New York City (April 11), Philadelphia (April 12) and London, England (April 14).
Once again, Webb athletes had a strong showing across the board during the 2018 winter season. Led by WSC soccer, which finished the season League Champions and with a deep run into CIF, both VWS and WSC athletics posted very positive results. VWS Water Polo also finished its league play in second place.
“It is always great each season to not only see our athletes and teams be successful on the field of play, but to see them learn and grow as individuals and part of a community,” said Director of Athletics Steve Wishek.