Parents of the HS Class of 2022- 3.0-3.4

Thanks. I’ll share it with her.

Susquehanna has a good creative writing program and would give great merit for those stats. Walk to a cute little town with enough shops/restaurants for a college kid. A short drive away is every big box store and chain restaurant one would ever need. Muhlenberg is another, more artsy though not sure about creative writing, good merit as well.


Thanks. Those sound interesting too. I’m not sure if she is prepared for colder winters, but she is not a fan of the heat so might work out.


@taverngirl beat me to the Susquehanna suggestion.

Did you look at the University of Mary Washington? Not sure what their OOS merit looks like.

BTW, I LOVED your description of VCU in Richmond. My S loved Richmond when we toured with my D and it is very high on his list.

App State has such a great creative writing program, but I totally get the but-it-is-right-here thing. (GMU is less than 10 miles from our house.)

Did you look at Ohio University yet? They give merit $ and have a creative writing program. Also have a strong theatre program.

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What about Emerson in Boston? Not sure about merit but it definitely has an artsy vibe and its right in the city so tons to do. I think creative writing is one of their biggest majors.

I would also look at the Colleges that Change Lives. Lots of those schools tend to attract artsy types. We looked at several of them with my D20 who is not very artsy but definitely a bit quirky.


I know Knox College in Galesburg, IL has an excellent creative writing program. It fits her stats and would offer good merit, I think. I can’t speak to its specific vibe but I’ve seen a lot of people speak very highly of it.


So glad your visit went well @Sweetgum ! You know that I have to second @cormac05 on the Knox suggestion. We haven’t visited in person yet but I will say their virtual experience is one of the best we’ve done, just very thorough, lots of videos. Unfortunately for us it was one of the first we did so everything else was kinda blah after that :woman_facepalming:

My D is also interested in creative writing and would like some kind of “town” nearby, some other schools we have looked at are: Agnes Scott (I think you’ve already ruled this one out?), Hendrix, Cornell College (IA), Beloit, Eckerd, Univ of Houston, and Univ of Tulsa. I can’t guarantee all of these meet the town requirement, because we haven’t visited, but they all have creative writing. Feel free to pm me on the creative writing if you want, I’ve gone OCD on it and know all the offerings at these schools, Knox as well. :blush:

We did our visit yesterday! We went out to Hendrix (drove out Sunday, spent the night, toured and home Monday). It was a really good experience. Reluctant D even said it was a good trip! It was nice because the school was one that I didn’t feel really showed very well virtually, but in person it really shined. I’ll do a separate visit report in the Hendrix thread for those interested, but it was a beautiful campus with a lot to offer.

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I think Agnes Scott had a more conservative (not in the political sense) rather than bohemian vibe from my quick look at it many many many months ago, but that might’ve been off base, and I’m also not sure about the money, but it might be worth another look. My mom actually went there though so if that would give us any legacy maybe that could help somehow.

She definitely doesn’t want a conservative place, either in vibe or politics.

I like Hollins (also a great creative writing program) but one of her friends is going there now and that is giving her second thoughts. I think she would kind of like to have a completely fresh start to reinvent herself.

I will check out Knox and look for your thread on Hendrix.

Well I just typed up my Hendrix visit and managed to delete it somehow before it posted :woman_facepalming: I’ll get back to it in a few days…

My D is also not after a conservative place, and honestly, Tulsa is pretty much off her list for that reason.

I think Knox has a very quirky vibe and they’ve managed a pretty diverse student body, especially considering their location.


@Sweetgum, just lurking here a bit (I have a D21 and a sister who lives practically next door to you in Carrboro…can’t wait for my next visit!) seems like I’ve heard that UNC-A has a strong creative writing program or did in the past. Asheville is pretty artsy and funky…is that a possibility?

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It might be. We walked around campus last Sept I think it was, when everything was still shut down. It’s a little more removed from Asheville proper, like you could get to stuff, but it’s not right there like at UNC or App or VCU.

Emerson is very stingy with merit.


Final grades for junior year are in and did not trend in the proper direction, unfortunately. S clearly did the bare minimum to pass in several of his classes. One wonders if perhaps it takes more work to carefully calculate your GPA and time your last second effort to break 70 than it would to just get everything done and handed in in the first place. But I digress…

I am interviewing educational consultants to see if S can be evaluated for college readiness and also discuss gap year alternatives, including a PG year at a boarding school. I’m not completely giving up hope yet for college in ‘22, but I’m also not terribly confident that he’s going to be ready and we need to start exploring options.


My D22 had a hard time this year with online school and lack of motivation. Was your S doing in-person or online? I think next year will be much better with in person school. I think D22 is starting to get her head a little more in the game. Got a job this summer and we had the successful visit to VCU so I think she can see a light at the end of the tunnel of high school.

FWIW, my oldest (class of 2019) swore next week to Sunday that college was never ever ever going to happen and then COVID was what happened and we all sat around the house for 9 months. Then oldest said to heck with this and got a job at Starbucks (really likes it) and is now talking about going back to Community College (and possibly transferring to a 4 yr school, but I can’t talk about that too much or I might put the mom-stink on the idea).

There are lots of paths forward and sometimes they just need some autonomy and to make mistakes and pick themselves up and dust themselves off and find their way (with some support from mom n dad in the background).


We were in person for the entire year. I’m sure his morale was affected by covid stress and one of his important extracurriculars being scaled way back, but it shouldn’t have had a huge impact on his grades.

I’m feeling better about alternative paths for him. I just hope he’ll keep an open mind, too. Glad your S is doing well with his choices and LOL about the mom stink. So true!!


S is making forward progress on the college applications front. He successfully completed the self-assessment questionnaire for his school counselor AND submitted it on time. (She will write his recommendation based on info from the questionnaire.)

He also heard back from his three teachers that he asked to write letters of recommendation. This is a big weight off his shoulders because he was worried that no teacher would write a letter for him.

He has two schools where he needs to interview on campus. So the next To Do is to schedule these interviews. I am hoping we can get them done in August. He would like to ideally meet with the orchestra professor while on campus. This might be tough to do in the summer.


Wow, good for him. My D22 is just back to ignoring again. I’m gonna see if I can get the ball rolling, but I am also tired of trying to make her do stuff. Such teeth pulling. Ends up being no fun for anyone.


@Sweetgum There’s a fine line between project managing and tuning out. I so get it!

We have a weekly College Stuff meeting on our calendar. I have been cancelling some of them to lower the stress level. School ended last week, so it’s a great time for a break from this stuff anyway.


So how much are you other parents directing the college process?

I am really wanting DD22 to get some stuff out of the way this summer, but it’s like pulling teeth. She is very much not into talking about it with me. I really just want to look at timelines and what needs to be done. She very much just wants to not think about school and chill this summer. I feel like she does more than enough chilling.

BTW, I am not a typical CC parent (whatever that means). I am pretty relaxed, but I am a bit anxious about the college process and her propensity for turning in work late. That’s not going to work if you miss the deadline for the scholarship, y’know?

So what are y’all doing this summer as far as prepping for college apps, etc, goes?

I was involved in S20’s search when he was a HS senior in this range. I felt it was too important to leave to him when he didn’t yet fully understand how important each step of the process was.

  1. Create an email account: and use this for all college contact during application season. That way, she doesn’t have to share her personal email account with mom. You can both access it to see replies and such.

  2. Use that email account when you fill out CommonApp/CoalitionApp, so you can both have access to those apps during the process to see what is being requested and what has been received.

  3. As you apply to colleges, use this email address as the contact. This way you are able to see everything and prod your student along in the process. Not all teens realize how important these deadlines are - she may think “Oh, if I miss Oct15, I can just turn it in Oct21 and it will probably be alright.” It may not be alright.

  4. This will also help after decisions have been announced. You can help keep up with Deferments. You can make sure FinAid is completed on time and properly. You can make sure R&B docs are completed on time and properly.

This isn’t necessary for all students. Some CC parents say their students do everything themselves, and I think that’s great if it works for those students. But many other students may not be ready for a do-or-die process and I personally didn’t think it was appropriate to use the college application season as a teaching lesson for my son when so much was riding on the process.

You know your child best. If you think she needs you to help out, these steps might be helpful to you both. My S20 didn’t give me any grief about helping him with the process. Even if he had I would have simply said, “I’ll let you handle it until I find out you aren’t handling it, then we’ll do it my way.” And that would have been that. But he thought it was a good idea for me to help at the time. Now that he’s finished his first year of college, he’s pulling back and taking care of more things himself. It wasn’t time when he was a HS senior, but it’s getting to the right time. Some kids hit it at 18, some at 20, some at 22. I thought it was/is my duty to make sure I’m around to help until he doesn’t need me, but each family might handle this differently.