It felt like a blink of an eye; I’m now a senior.
I remember my first day of school. I didn’t know where any of my classes were and I didn’t know what to expect. Everywhere I walked, I heard upperclassmen scoffing and giving my rather loud friends looks; I knew what they were thinking: freshmen are clueless. And in a sense, they’re right.
Most freshmen are likely to walk into a classroom, scan the room, and not see any familiar faces. In dismay they think: who could I see myself being friends with?
You’ve probably done this before; you see a boy with eye glasses reading and label him as a “nerd.” Sometimes, you take a step further and conclude that he is probably anti-social because he is reading a book at lunch. Often times, this isn’t the case. Instead, you should strive to remove your prejudices and expose yourself to different people.
A hard thing to accept is that your best friend since first grade may not be the same person even by the end of your freshmen year. Usually, it’s not a dramatic split; you two just grow apart because of different interests and schedules. It’s not a bad thing; in high school you are going to be friends with the people you see more often in class or in extracurricular activities.
Another important thing to realize as a freshman is that your plan may not go exactly as you wanted. Before freshman year, I planned to play competitive volleyball, play the clarinet through high school and take as many advanced courses as I can. Most of these things didn’t turn out the way I expected. Instead, I became involved in journalism and DECA club, which helped me solidify my career plan. So, be flexible and be more open-minded. Seek out opportunities made available to you; high schools have a ton of clubs, sports, and organizations for you to try out. You could discover a new passion and make new friends in the process.
After freshman year, people expect to have a high school experience like the movies. Since most are turning 16, many imagine cruising to the beach on a random day with all their friends with the windows rolled down and music blasting.
However, I found that the transition from freshman to sophomore year is not an easy one and not at all as glamorous as I expected. When you are a freshman, teachers and even your parents are easier on you because they know how tough it is to adjust to a completely new environment.
By sophomore year, you are expected to get serious; the workload gets more difficult and people start asking a question that you will hear over and over again: what do you want to do after high school? This is an ideal time to start thinking about college and a career. Start doing your research now. By junior year, classes, internships and job opportunities get more specialized, so you’re ahead if you know what track you want to pursue.
The last three years have been filled with late nights studying for seemingly endless tests and anxiously thinking to myself, “When will high school end?”
The most ironic part is that I want senior year to go by slowly; if you think about it, the years you spend in high school are really your last years of childhood. So enjoy them while you can; the four years truly go by quickly.
As seen in the San Mateo Daily Journal