As we reach the middle of the semester, I , Jordan Jones, have paid a total of $335 towards graduating in May of 2018, with much more to come. I have also spent almost every weekend since the school year started volunteering for various clubs. All of this time and money is not just because I want to graduate but because I want to graduate with specific distinctions and create opportunities for myself after high school. So, making it to graduation is one thing but the many task leading up to it, are what’s the real cost.
Similar to many other students I am apart of numerous clubs and organization like Beta Club, National Honor Society, The National Society of Black Engineers, and a couple more. Throughout the years of high school I have joined these clubs because of my grades and/or my personal interest in them. However, this year, the requirements for the clubs on top of school’s daily requirements are starting to pile up.
Almost every club has dues that range from $20 to $25 and require service hours that can range from 10 to 20+ hours, depending on the different penalties each club upholds. So, now you are probably wondering “How do you have time for all of these hours?” The answer to that is, we don’t. Don’t get me wrong, volunteering at the crack of dawn every weekend is good for the community, but it takes a toll on you. Sometimes I just want to play hookie and not go, but then I remember, May 2018 I will be walking across the stage as a distinguished high school graduate.
However, clubs and organizations are just the tip of the senior year ice berg. We can’t forget about the endless college applications that come along with it. In my opinion, it takes, on average, an hour to complete one college application. That’s not including the 30 minutes you might take out to review it. In addition to time, applications also cost tons of money. My most expensive application is $85 and the rest are between $40 and $60. So, if you’re like me, and don’t have money stored away for college or even applications for that matter, then these prices can really add up.
Now, as much as I would love to graduate without all of these clubs and without applying to so many expensive schools, I know that in the end I will be successful in my journey. Right now, it seems like I am a little fish trying to swim in the whitewater rapids of school. I rarely have time to hang out with friends and barely enough money to pay for gas in my car. But, this is the cost to graduate: late nights of homework and FAFSA [The Free Application for Federal Student Aid] reports.
This is the cost of graduating with so many honors that colleges have no choice but to accept me. This is senior year, and I hope that you can make it through just like me.