Embrace Change, Create Lasting Memories, Live Without Regret

Parting Advice from a Senior


Friends met along the way, memories that will last forever.

Visiting the high school before my freshman year is an experience that is still memorable to me. It was the idea of the new freedom and independence that I would gain from being a high schooler that made it so thrilling. However, this excitement slightly diminished when my brother explained to me that high school would be a lot more challenging, I would lose and gain friends, and I would be a completely different person by the time I got out. His words unnerved me, and for the first time I started to feel apprehensive about the product of my future self. I feared the new obstacles and responsibilities that I would encounter. This fear that I was feeling, was the fear of change.

As a senior now, I can agree that this change did occur. I’ve lost and gained friends; school was rigorous, especially junior year; and some aspects of myself remained consistent, but overall I’ve become a new person with different values. It can be fun, yet it can also be hard growing up and becoming a new version of yourself. It feels as though you are losing part of your innocence and youth. Nevertheless, change shouldn’t be something we fear. It should be something we embrace.

In order to embrace this change I recommend getting involved in clubs, challenging yourself, and taking adequate breaks to avoid burnout. High school exposes you to a multitude of people and choices so make the most out of it because the years pass by quickly.

One way to take advantage of your high school experience and create lasting memories is through involvement with clubs starting your freshman year. Clubs are a great way to find your interests and can help you figure out what career path you want to pursue. Personally, clubs allowed me to create new friends and participate in activities after school with like-minded people. They gave me the opportunity to develop my leadership skills for college as well. Try to explore the different clubs offered here, and if a club isn’t offered, start a new one. Be proactive and take initiative. Like I said before, change is constantly occurring in high school and it allows us to evolve as a community if we embrace it together.

Developing an open mind in high school is also important because you learn to challenge yourself. More specifically, everyone has a different way of learning, but challenging yourself in an academic setting is important because you build up your work ethic. Therefore, don’t drop a class because it’s hard, and don’t think you aren’t capable of succeeding in the face of adversity. Instead, stick it out and you’ll realize how motivated you become as a result.

However, high school can be stressful when you’re trying to balance extracurriculars, a social life, and/or sports. Therefore, it’s important to take breaks to find clarity and alleviate some of this stress. Of course academics take priority and you should always put them first, but it’s essential that you don’t feel constrained or controlled by your grades. Now, taking a break doesn’t mean going on your phone and scrolling through social media. Instead, try and go for a walk, grab food with your friends, or go to a sports event. Interacting with others, socializing, and creating fun memories will ease the tension of school and allow you to experience more focus when it’s time to get back into your school work.

High school is a place where you can discover who you are by participating in different activities and meeting new people. Take this time to explore new avenues and find out what your values are. Absorb the knowledge and advice given to you by your peers and teachers. Work towards your goals little by little, no matter how difficult they are. And finally, flourish into the person you aspire to be.