Responsibility is a serious word, and while it is not usually something I would leave you with for the holiday break, it is something that needs to be shared with all applicants. There is an expected level of responsibility when a student applies to college, in that it is now your obligation to make sure all required materials are submitted. The responsibility does not fall to your parents, your counselor, your siblings, or the college, but instead rests with you.
Colleges have the responsibility to let you know what is going on with your application, and to update you on the above mentioned materials. If you submit all the materials within the set deadlines, the college is responsible for reviewing your application and making a decision on your file in a reasonable time frame (although the definition of a reasonable time frame varies depending upon who you ask!).
But remember, the duty of getting in all information falls to you, the applicant. For 6+ years, UGA has had the status check, and last year we added a status check for high school counselors as well. We also send out between 2-4 emails to incomplete applicants to alert them to any missing information. In addition, we suggest not waiting until a deadline to apply, as this puts you in a bad position when trying to make sure all materials are received by a college.
In other words, if you apply, get your stuff in at least by the deadline if not hopefully before, and make sure it is received by the college. You, the applicant, control the time line, and if you wait until the last minute to apply and submit materials, you are the one putting your application at risk of being incomplete.
I don’t want to be completely negative, as our EA applicant pool had about 97% of the students get all materials in on time! Our office hates to have incomplete applications, and we do our best to get them completed. But ultimately, it is up to you, the applicant, to make sure you have taken care of everything, thus allowing us to make a decision.
Responsibility is a strong word, but one that is important as you make the change from high school to college. We look for this quality in our applicants, and we expect it from our students at UGA.