Caitryn Tronoski’s First Leap into the College Application Process

Mendham High School Senior begins her long-awaited college journey.


Image taken by Mark Lee at Colorado College in Colorado Springs, from the top of Shove Memorial Chapel, showing the Colorado College campus with Pikes Peak in the background.

Emma Stark, Co-Editor for Sports

As Early Decision deadlines are rapidly approaching, Mendham High School Senior Caitryn Tronoski began to take one of the greatest steps in her educational career, applying to college. This past summer, Tronoski traveled all over the nation in search of finding the perfect school. From Connecticut and Rhode Island to Florida and Colorado, Tronoski experienced life on numerous college campuses and quickly learned what she was looking for. 

Image taken by Catiryn Tronoski highlighting the main quad of Colorado College.

This lengthy process was particularly new for the Tronoski family. Since Caitryn is the oldest sibling, she is the first to go through it. The family initiated the process by researching the top liberal arts colleges in the country. After visiting countless universities, Tronoski gravitated towards the schools in mountainous regions with cold and rainy weather, like Colorado College (CC). CC is about ten minutes away from Manitou Springs, a town near Pikes Peak, the highest summit of the southern Front Range of the Rocky Mountains. This 14,000-foot elevation hike made CC even more appealing to Tronoski.

However, the schools that she is looking at are exceedingly strong regarding academics. While CC has a 13.5% acceptance rate, Rhode Island’s Brown University has a 7% acceptance rate.  These low statistics make Tronoski’s application decisions even more difficult, as she is struggling to decide which school she would like to apply Early Decision to. Tronoski describes Early Decision as a “binding contract,” meaning if you are accepted into your Early Decision school, “you can’t go to any other colleges that you’ve applied to.” The deadline for most of Caitryn’s safety schools is late October to early November. 

The number one thing that I’m looking for, more than academics, more than weather, more than location is community. I really need people that will support me regardless of major.

— Caitryn Tronoski

Tronoski, reflecting on her summer college visits, expresses that the number one thing that she is looking for in a school, “more than academics, more than weather, more than location is community.” “A lot of these schools tend to have the same thing where their student community is involved in so many different activities,” she explains. “I really need people that will support me regardless of major.”

After changing schools within the past few years, Tronoski is looking forward to a fresh start in college. Despite Caitryn’s struggle to determine which school she would like to apply Early Decision to, she is thrilled for this new chapter in her life to take off.