Zoë Carpenter is The Nation’s associate Washington editor. She received the James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism in 2018, and has been a finalist for the Livingston Awards and the National Education Writers Awards. Her work has also appeared in Rolling Stone, Guernica, and various other publications. Follow her on Twitter @ZoeSCarpenter.
COLLEGE FINALIST: The range of options that my generation has to choose from has been whittled to a handful of bad ones. I am coming of age not in the land of the free, but in the land of the dependent.