Seniors celebrate success at annual On Site Decision Day

Students interview with college admissions officers in the Upper Media Center.

Dana Lambert

Students interview with college admissions officers in the Upper Media Center.

We asked WMHS staff where they went to college, what they degrees they got, and if they worked; here are the stats. (Graphic credit: Lesley Paulino)

Senior year is met with many exciting events, choices, and privileges. Between more elective choices, senior movie nights, prom, and much more, West Milford provides students with a send-off that they’re sure not to forget anytime soon. One part of the school year, however, that plagues seniors for months on end with fear, stress, excitement, and everything in between, is college application time. Even that simple phrase is enough to strike fear into the hearts of Seniors past, present and future. On-Site Decision Day, an annual event organized by the members of the West Milford Guidance Department, is designed to ease some of the “after” stress that afflicts seniors when applications are in and months are spent stalking the mailman to see if he’s delivering a decision letter. This year’s event hosted 30 colleges from New Jersey and the surrounding states. 

The event, which was hosted in the Upper Media Center this year, allowed students to interview live with colleges’ admissions officers, discuss their transcripts, and ask questions. The draw of the event? Students receive a decision from the school right then and there; by the end of their interview, students will receive a yes, no, or be waitlisted. The early decision bears many benefits — in particular, it allows more time for accepted students to research schools and make a decision on their commitment, and for rejected students to find new colleges to which to apply or to rework their post-high school plans. Having an extra few months of time knowing in advance (considering that most decisions are released around April) can ease the stress by stretching out the huge transition that comes between high school and college.

Mandi Dellagicoma and Julia Dan celebrate acceptances together.

The seniors who participated in the event had quite a lot of positive feedback about the exciting event, “I think On Site Day is one of the most useful tools and greatest opportunities any school can have,” Polglaze, an aspiring history teacher, said. “You get an opportunity to meet with a college in person without having to do anything but go to [our own] school and apply.” 

The event hosted an astounding 273 appointments between 99 participating seniors, most of whom are now proudly college bound. Though this step is now finished for many, exciting new horizons await, with their own set of trials; in the coming months, seniors will begin to officially commit to schools, declare their majors, and solidify plans for a bright future. An Instagram page, @wmhs.seniors.23, has been created by members of the senior class in order to celebrate college commitments made by the graduating class of 2023.