As the year wraps up, so does this year’s college application season


Getty Images/iStockphoto

Photo courtesy of Google.

Joanna Lee

As the 2021 year comes to an end, this year’s college application cycle is also being wrapped up. Multiple Coyote seniors have submitted their University of California (UC), California State, and private college applications. 

Sophia Espinosa, a 17-year-old senior, shared, “My target schools are UCLA and USC because they both have highly ranked biological science majors in which I am interested.” Espinosa adds, “I plan on majoring in biological sciences because it is an impacted major at UCLA.” According to UCLA’s 2019 major statistics, 5% of the year’s graduates majored in biological sciences, making it the 5th most majored. Espinosa states, “UCLA, which is my top choice, has a lower acceptance rate than most of the UCs. However, I hope that my grades and extracurricular activities will make me a ‘stand out’ applicant.” 

As for Aryanna Mendoza, a 17-year-old senior, she hopes to attend Columbia University or UC Berkeley with a major in psychology. “Especially Columbia, it has been my dream school ever since I was young,” she said. However, with current acceptance rates and intense competition among candidates, Mendoza commented, “I think it’s dumb how they [colleges] put everyone in one group in terms of GPA, so it doesn’t matter how high or low it is.” Jade Davis, a 17-year-old senior, added, “I don’t really have personal opinions, but I do know that UCI dropped their acceptance rates by 3 percent, which I think is a little extreme.” In terms of top schools and ambitions for Davis, she said, “My top target schools are mostly up north, but I did apply to schools around here like UC Merced, Pomona, UC Davis, UC Riverside, etc.” 

Along with these plans and acceptance probabilities for these applicants, they shared their efforts to prove their eligibility for their dream schools. Davis explained, “I want to go to the medical field and specifically, psychology. The way I stood out to colleges was doing activities outside of school. I started working at a medical clinic and it gave me that push to show the effort I was putting in. I also took classes in Fullerton College and Cal State Fullerton.” Davis also has an array of accomplishments, one of them being the president of multiple clubs on campus. “I think the biggest award for me other than the Distinguished Scholar Award is becoming president of the National Honors Society at school (NHS),” she said.

Espinosa also has an impressive array of awards. She said, “I am a recipient of the AP Capstone [diploma] and hold the AP Scholar with Distinction award since I have above a 3.5 average score on all the AP Exams I have taken.” 

Leslie Rufino, a 17-year-old senior, said, “I have been top 25 for all my previous years of highschool, been the MVP in volleyball, most improved for volleyball twice, Rookie of the Year for swimming, and I’ve gotten several awards for my art.” In terms of her application, Rufino said, “In total, I’m applying to 12 schools: 4 UC’s, 4 Cal-States, and 4 private schools. With just my high school education, it isn’t enough; especially if I want to pursue my career, I need college.”

With Early Decision and Early Action decisions just around the corner, counselors, teachers, and students are awaiting good news. Regardless, the Coyote community is proud of the work seniors have accomplished despite their tumultuous high school years. For all Coyote seniors reading: as the popular saying goes, “You’ll end up where you’re meant to be.” You got this, Coyotes!