The student news site of Corona del Mar High School


The student news site of Corona del Mar High School


The student news site of Corona del Mar High School


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Closing Time: Say Goodbye to the 2023 UC Applications

Photo courtesy of Christina House via Los Angeles Times.

On November 30, the UC applications were due, ending the process of applying to the University of California system for this 2023 – 2024 season. During the days leading up to the deadline, the graduating class of 2024 was frantically putting the finishing touches on their applications and polishing every detail. This deadline marks a major milestone in the college application and admission process, with “an all-time high of 210,840” students applying last fall, according to the University of California article “Record-breaking number of students apply to the University of California for fall 2022” by the UC Office of the President. This year, the number of applicants is only expected to rise, as the UCs become more and more popular.

The UC application consists of seven sections: about you, campuses and majors, academic history, test scores, activities and awards, scholarships and programs, and personal insights. Though some of those are more stressful to complete, and some sections hold more weight than others, each section will play a factor in the colleges one gets admitted to. Senior Kiana Sohrab “applied to UCLA, UCSB, UCSD, and UC Berkeley.” Though she enjoyed how easy it was to be “able to send the same application and essay to all the schools”,  one downside of this application was “the activities and awards section.” Notorious in all college applications, the activities and awards section is daunting for many. Having to summarize every significant accomplishment and extracurricular can prove to be difficult for many applicants, especially since admissions officers put a lot of emphasis on this section when considering who to accept. Another extremely important section of the application is the PIQs, personal insight questions. Many struggle to complete this section, however, in Senior Ellison Krueger’s experience, “writing the essays was not as bad as most people made it seem.” Her strategy was to take it “slowly and try to really focus on making them true to [herself].” She also tried her best to “not make them extremely wordy and extra, but honest and to the point.”

The college application process can be worrisome for many, especially for more selective schools like the UCs. During this process, many seniors pick up strategies that allow them to have an easier and smoother application season. “Since the prompts are already on the internet, you can start brainstorming and creating a rough draft as early as you want”, which Krueger recommends, as that tactic “took a lot of stress away”. Sohrab agrees that starting the process early is the best way to go about completing the application, “because as soon as the common app opens up it can get overwhelming with the number of essays that you will have to write.” More advice Krueger shared was to “try your best to make your applications a true reflection of yourself”, “go to college essay night at school”, “[watch] some webinars through the UC system about tips for filling out the application and essays”, and “make sure you are proud of what you are applying with and do not be afraid to ask for help!”

Many UCs, such as UCLA and UC Berkeley, have been dubbed “public Ivies”, showing the prestige some of these universities hold, and the difficulty of getting accepted. Though for many, with the passing of the UC application deadline, a large part of the college application is finished, another big deadline, the closing of the Common App, is nearing quickly, on January 1, 2024.

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