College Admission Decisions Not What You Expected? Read This.

“…the truth is you HAVEN’T lost that much. But what you have gained…well…we have yet to see.” 

If you spent one day…one day…asking each adult you came across about their life and how they got to where they are today, you would find a varying degree of small, powerful stories. Maybe surprising stories. Maybe stories that leave you asking more. Stories that tell a web of experiences, networks, mentorships and sheer coincidental interactions. I’m going to let you in on a little secret. The path of one’s life is never straight. And the path to success is even curvier.


Here’s the thing. You may have just walked past a student in the hall that you KNOW got into the university you were rejected from. You may have overheard that it’s looking like a “tough” year for everyone in the UC system. You might have been deferred…and now feel the tiniest possibility weighing on the MOST unpredictable scale out of your hands completely. But you have not lost.

You have not lost.

Whether you’re a student feeling slighted or a parent feeling helpless, it is important to remember. You have not lost.

Let’s rewind to the first sentence. If you spent a day talking to adults about their life, you’d be surprised to find that not everything is so cut and dry. Not everything is so straight and narrow. Careers in fields they never majored in. Degrees not finished, yet still successful. A university you’ve never heard of. A business startup without a degree in business. What these stories have in common are unpredictability and adaptability. The makings of life.

As a student on the verge of choosing your college education remember…you have not lost. Not lost the opportunity for a successful future. Not lost a pathway made up of experiences, networks, mentorship and sheer coincidental interactions.

You only lose what you think you lose. And you will only be as successful as the bar you set for yourself. You tap out when you want to. You make breakthroughs when you persevere. You choose resiliency when an alternate path comes your way. You network and find mentors who will lift you up. YOU get to choose the definition of what is lost. So make it a small one, because the truth is you HAVEN’T lost that much. But what you have gained…well…we have yet to see. 


Published by Casey Barneson

Author of The College Wellness Guide. Beverly Hills High School College Counselor.

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