Counterpoint: Should parents help students with their college apps?

Aaron Bialer, Daniel Bidikov, Aaron Bialer, and Daniel Bidikov

Living in Port Washington, you may find that your parents have made a lot of decisions for you.

You might not disagree with all of these decisions—you probably like flute and sleepaway camp—but as you approach senior year, be wary of the amount of influence that they have on the college process.

Applying to college is a lot of work, yes, and it is helpful to have support from as many outlets as possible, but parents and other outsiders view the college process with a perspective that is not relevant to the decision making of the student.

Many parents, rightfully, want what they think is best for their children. In this respect, they often do not know what high school students want out of a college education and should lay off.

People who are not students often push for the most prestigious option. From an early age, parents will encourage their children to idolize and worship certain schools because they are the “best” and not because they offer specific programs that the students want, or have the kind of environment in which the student will fit.

“We are going to college, not out parents,” said senior Deirdra Labartino. “Parents should offer opinions and make general statements, but what we put in our applications and where we apply to is our responsibility. If they help too much, it’s as if the college is accepting our parents and not us.”

“If students’ parents have too much influence on their child’s college choice it may be a bad thing. Many parents want their kid to go to the ‘best’ possible school, not necessarily where they are happiest,” said senior Matt Brandes.

Only students themselves know their own preferences. Though advice may help students find their true preference, it should not control their decision making.

Choosing to get a college education, especially at a highly selective insitution is a sign of intellectual maturity.

Students should exercise this maturity by assuming full control over their college decision. Proper decision making in this respect is a sign that students have done their research and know what they want out of their education and college experience.

In this case, it is much more acceptable for parents to voice their opinions as parents have the right to trust their children are safe at college.

Parents should attempt no to interfere much in their childrens’ college applications, as it is overall, their childrens’ decision, not theirs.