High School Is Not Predestined To Be The Best Days Of Your Life

High School Is Not Predestined To Be The Best Days Of Your Life

The glory days aren't over, people.
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Growing up, high school is portrayed as being a momentous period of your lifetime. Nothing will top it, you'll find yourself during your high school years, you'll find out who your true friends are, they say. We can attribute these notions to the media we consume: movies, books, those wildly popular tweets that you see five times a day.

But these ideas set us up for disappointment; high school is a small fraction of your lifetime and for the vast majority of people, it isn't seen as the best years of their lives.

Every moment feels so important once we're in them. As adolescents, we look to high school as the golden years of freedom, and the feeling of being "cool" that comes with getting older. In high school, we tend to have underclassmen looking up to us, responsibilities to teams, clubs, etc. that make us feel as if we serve an importance to this institution that we've spent so much time in. This time serves as the foundation for which you can begin to learn about yourself.

While high school can definitely have a large impact on your life, it may not be the pivotal years that define you as a person. Your existence does not lose importance once you step out of high school for the last time. It is the years after high school that lead you down a path to self-discovery. High school is the beginning of that path, not the end. The experiences that come after graduation become much more crucial to developing your identity.

In addition, the notion that high school is the primary place where you develop meaningful relationships that you will carry with you throughout your life is not an absolute truth. Many times, people change dramatically once high school graduation is behind them; they can become people you no longer recognize.

Some friendships are only formed based on proximity while others can withstand the distance that college or other pursuits bring. Fading friendships can be a difficult thing to navigate but with maturity and understanding, it becomes easier to accept the changes that come.

Growing up is challenging; a time made up of constant losses and gains that we can't seem to catch up with. It can feel like time passes without any idea of how much is different around us before we look up one day and only see the unfamiliar. The key to navigating high school before, during, and after is letting go of preconceived notions, not setting yourself up for things that may not come. But also recognize that high school is massively important to your development and can set you up for future opportunities.

Enjoy the experiences as they present themselves to you, make the best of the time you have, cherish the people that you have. Better things are coming.

Cover Image Credit: 123rf

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Stop Discourging Future Teachers

One day, you'll be thankful for us.
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“What do you want to be when you grow up?" It seems like this is the question we heard from the time we were able to talk. Our answers started out as whatever movie or action figure was popular that year. I personally was going to be Cinderella and shoot spider webs out of my wrists at the same time. The next phase was spent choosing something that we read about in a book or saw in movies. We were aspiring to be actors, skydivers, and astronauts.

After we realized NASA may not necessarily be interested in every eager 10-year-old, we went through the unknown stage. This chapter of life can last a year or for some, forever. I personally did not have a long “unknown" stage. I knew I was going to be a teacher, more specifically I knew I wanted to do elementary or special education. I come from a family of educators, so it was no surprise that at all the Thanksgiving and Christmas functions I had actually figured it out. The excitement of knowing what to do with the rest of my life quickly grew and then began to dwindle just as fast.

“Why?"

"Well, looks like you'll be broke all your life."

“That's a lot of paperwork."

“If I could go back and do it again, I wouldn't choose this."

These are just a few replies I have received. The unfortunate part is that many of those responses were from teachers themselves. I get it, you want to warn and prepare us for the road we are about to go down. I understand the stress it can take because I have been around it. The countless hours of grading, preparing, shopping for the classroom, etc. all takes time. I can understand how it would get tiresome and seem redundant. The feeling a teacher has when the principal schedules yet another faculty meeting to talk an hour on what could've been stated in an email… the frustration they experience when a few students seem uncontrollable… the days they feel inadequate and unseen… the sadness they feel when they realize the student with no supplies comes from a broken home… I think it is safe to say that most teachers are some of the toughest, most compassionate and hardworking people in this world.

Someone has to be brave enough to sacrifice their time with their families to spend time with yours. They have to be willing to provide for the kids that go without and have a passion to spread knowledge to those who will one day be leading this country. This is the reason I encourage others to stop telling us not to go for it.

Stop saying we won't make money because we know. Stop saying we will regret it, because if we are making a difference, then we won't. Stop telling us we are wasting our time, when one day we will be touching hearts.

Tell us to be great, and then wish us good luck. Tell us that our passion to help and guide kids will not go unnoticed. Tell us that we are bold for trying, but do not tell us to change our minds.

Teachers light the path for doctors, police officers, firefighters, politicians, nurses, etc. Teachers are pillars of society. I think I speak for most of us when I say that we seek to change a life or two, so encourage us or sit back and watch us go for it anyways.

Cover Image Credit: Kathryn Huffman

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14 Honest College Things The Class Of 2023 Needs To Know ~Before~ Fall Semester

Sit down, be humble.

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To The Class of 2023,

Before you start your college career, please know:

1. Nobody...and I mean nobody gives a shit about your AP Calculus scores.

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" I got a 5 in Calc AB AND BC, a 5 in AP Literature, awh but I only got a 4 in AP Chem"

2. THE SAME GOES FOR YOUR SAT/ACT SCORES + nobody will know what you're talking about because they changed the test like 10 times since.

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3. College 8 AMs are not the same as your 0 period orchestra class in 12th grade.

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4. You're going to get rejected from a lot of clubs and that does not make you a failure.

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5. If you do get into your clubs, make sure not to overwhelm or overcommit yourself.

visual representation of what it looks like when you join too many clubs

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6. It's OK to realize that you don't want to be pre-med or you want to change majors.

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7. There will ALWAYS ALWAYS be someone who's doing better than you at something but that doesn't mean you're behind.

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8. "I'm a freshman but sophomore standin-" No, you don't have to clarify that, you'll sound like an asshole.

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9. You may get your first ever B-, C+ or even D OR EVEN A W in your life. College is meant to teach you how to cope with failure.

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10. Go beyond your comfort zone. Join a theatre club if you're afraid of public speaking. Join an animal rescue club if you're afraid of animals. College is learning more about yourself.

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11. Scholarships do exist. APPLY APPLY APPLY.

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12. Don't try to brag about all the stuff you did in high school, you'll just sound like a weenie hut jr. scout

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13. Understand and be sensitive to the fact that everybody around you has a different experience and story of getting to university.

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14. You're going to be exposed to people with different opinions and views, don't fight them. Instead, try to explain your perspective and listen to their reasoning as well.

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