The Consequences of "Senioritis"


By Sarah Whalen
Senioritis is very common among seniors in high school. Once being accepted to college, seniors feel as though they are done, and no longer need to try.

Seniors are continuously told by their teachers, guidance counselors and parents that colleges will take back their acceptance, but most students find that hard to believe. Though it is hard for seniors to imagine this happening, its occurrence has increased in the past few years.

“It happened more in the past three years then I’ve ever seen it” guidance counselor Lee Greco said. She explained that when grades significantly drop on the last transcript of senior year, colleges are likely to send a letter to the accepted and enrolled student explaining one of a few different possibilities of what the outcome of their poor grades is. “I’ve actually seen the students getting that letter, more recently… It’s a big wake up call,” Greco explained that these students do not see it coming, and are filled with regret from the few months of slacking during the spring of their senior year. Recently, the possibility of students receiving this letter has increased. This has happened at least three to four times at Hopkinton High school in the past three years.

Colleges can deny a student from coming, even after the student’s deposit for enrollment has been paid. Sometimes there must be a meeting set up with the student and the dean of the school to decide the consequences of the student’s senioritis.  Going to school early in the summer and take a study skills course is another possible result. Academic probation and beginning the school year a semester late are also possible outcomes of significant drops in a student’s grades.

The economy may be one of the explanations for the increase in lazy behavior. The change in the economy within the past few years has caused more students to apply to state schools. With more applications coming in, the schools seem to exceed acceptance limits. With this happening, the colleges are running out of space for the students who have decided to enroll. To fix this problem, colleges are looking at the final transcripts of the accepted students more often. They are turning away more students with poor grades because of this over accepting.

Another counselor from Hopkinton High School had instances, in another school system, of students who went through senioritis and were penalized by their first year at college by being delayed  a semester. “It’s easy to stop doing not as much work,” she said. Many seniors feel as though it is enough to receive the grades to graduate, and don’t think about keeping their grades up to keep themselves in their college of choice.

Senioritis seems to start around March. When students go as far as not trying at all, and basically stop being a student, they are not prepared to start up working again when they return to school in the fall. Though senioritis is very easy to fall into, students need to keep a balance. It is expected of seniors to slack on their school work once they have been accepted to a college, but too much slacking can result in problems with the students’ next year’s plans.