Written by Maddie De Pree, Columnist
Welcome back, readers! After the combined whirlwind of grad school applications and a long holiday break in Atlanta, the dust has finally settled, and I am easing into my final semester at Furman University. (Picture me pausing dramatically here, staring out of a frosted window pane as a string quartet swells in the distance.) It seems that only yesterday, I was wrapping up my last months of high school—blah, blah. All this is to say that the beginning of my last semester of undergrad would probably be pretty emotional for me, if I could suspend my impatience about my graduate school decisions.
Which, of course, I cannot.
Everyone has given me different advice about the period between applying to schools and hearing back. (Some of said advice: Keep busy. Don’t check your email. Find a new hobby.) For my part, I have industriously ignored these tips and now spend most of my afternoons procrastinating other tasks and hitting refresh on my inbox. With each reload of the browser, I hope to receive an email with the following glorious subject line: Your Application Status Has Been Updated.
I’m aware that this is an exercise in futility. I can’t rush the admissions committees via refresh button, and I technically have better things to do, like finishing my senior art show and getting my articles to my editor on time (sorry, Will!) But I just can’t get my mind off of my applications. The internet is no help, either— everywhere I look, I find horror stories of applicants who have applied to the same programs for years, only to be turned down every time. The thought of this is enough to disturb any undergrad.
I’m almost more worried about the period that will occur after I’ve heard back from all of my schools. Until I hear back from these programs, I am suspended in a Schrodinger’s-cat-like position, neither accepted nor rejected from any of the schools I’ve applied to. I am at once in and out, until I hear otherwise. Once all of the decisions have been made, I’ll have to stop thinking of possibilities and start thinking of realities. That’s a hard thing to do at any stage of life.
Until then, I’ll be avoiding the “MFA Draft ‘20” Facebook page and basking in my last few months as a Furman student. Who knows—if I can manage to stay away from my application portals, I might end up enjoying myself.