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After being on this site for a while, I realized that applying to just one school made me one of the few, the proud, the...naive? I felt confident about me decision until I logged on here and realized people were applying to 4..5..14!? schools. And I started thinking I might have screwed myself. But then the news came -- I was accepted! To say I was elated would be an understatement. To keep what could be a long story short: No, I don't advise just applying to one school even though it worked out to me, it's always nice to have a backup plan. But if just one school gets your blood flowing, you think it'd be a fantastic fit, and you realistically think you could get in, go for it! Don't let other people psych you out. You know you better than anyone else and this is your process and yours alone. One was enough for me and I couldn't be happier with that decision.
When I applied for undergrad, I only applied to two or three schools. I didn't think there was anything wrong with that, I had to go in state, to a public school, and I didn't want to go to a huge (more than 10,000) school so that left very few options. I picked one, and although I came close to transferring, I graduated two and a half years later, relatively happy with my decision. Fast forward to deciding where to apply for grad school. About a year before I was set to graduate with my BA, I'd decided what I wanted to go to grad school for (student affairs) and started looking for programs. At first, I had two key factors in mind - I wanted a school in an urban environment, with an ultimate frisbee club team (bonus points if the city had a professional ultimate team). This narrowed it down to one or two schools so I started intensely researching them. Reading everything I could about the programs online, searching for youtube videos, seeing how their alumni were now doing professionally, reading into the faculty of the school, and trying to learn about the social climate of the university and the city it was in. This lead to me falling in love with a school, so that's where I applied. That's right, I only applied to one school. I figured this was the place I wanted to be, so why apply to spend years of my life at a program my heart wasn't set on. After being on gradcafe for a few weeks and interacting with a few students interested in student affairs, I realized this was not the norm at all. I saw people applying to 4, 5, up to 14 or so schools. This shocked me. I panicked. Starting looking into these programs the other students were applying to, considering scrambling to get a few more applications in before deadlines. But while I was doing this search, I didn't find another program that had me grinning at my computer screen as I envisioned myself there. I didn't find myself being annoyed that there wasn't more information about the program online. I didn't find myself craving to go to any other school. So despite breaking the status quo and putting all my eggs in one basket, I'm (mostly) confident in my decision. I only applied to one school and that's okay. Some people may think this is foolish and maybe I'll agree if I get rejected from what I think is the school for me. But that's a bridge I'll cross if I get there. Anyone has experience with or feelings about applying to just one school? I'd love to talk to you about it.
I've been lucky enough to get the opportunity to share my recent and hopefully future experiences with you guys through the form of some (probably) incoherent spiels. I'm hoping I'll be able to help people out, or maybe just provide some entertainment while you're waiting for those elusive decisions from prospective schools. Let's jump right into it. I'm 20, just graduated from a small, relatively unknown public state school in the South with a BA in psychology. I'm hoping to pursue a Masters in Student Affairs. Essentially, I'd like to get paid to hang out with kids all day and maybe give them some advice that'll send them in the right direction. I could elaborate more on that but that's the bare bones. Feel free to ask me more about how I came upon that decision or anything else - I'm pretty much an open book!