Summer’s over and the seniors are stressed

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Jenna Archer, Features Editor

Fall can be a stressful time for anyone. Students are back to school, trying to learn how to juggle social lives, homework, and sports for the upcoming year. Teachers are balancing grading, families, and lesson planning. But perhaps the fall is most stressful for one group in particular–seniors.

By the fall of senior year, students are expected to have answers. What are you going to do in life? Where are you going to school? Where are you going to work? How are you going to get there?

Between applying for colleges, taking SATs, competing for scholarships, building resumes, or gaining work experience, things can pile up fast. But seniors relax and take a deep breath, there are many people around to help. 

The teachers and administration have been through it themselves and they’re more than happy to offer a few words of wisdom. 

Mrs. Atkinson, one of MASH’s English teachers, says “It’s okay if you don’t know what you want to do with the rest of your life. You should have some sort of plan for next year whether it’s work or school or travel or the military, but no one should expect you to have your life mapped out. And if you have it mapped out, it’s okay if it changes.”

For those students who are unsure, Mrs. Atkinson hopes to lend some comfort. It’s okay to not know, but it may make these students feel better to have a skeleton of a plan. If you’re a senior in the process of applying to college, a great opportunity she offers is a college essay Flex period on day 4!

Another of MASH’s English teachers, Mrs. Chow, offers “Try to be present for everything ‒ even the mundane moments like standing in line at lunch, signing out of the office, and fire drills. After this year, you will never experience these things again.”

She advises seniors to take in every little moment and make them count; they won’t get the chance to go back and they’ll want to remember later in life.

Mr. Reidy, who teaches AP Human Geography and has recently been hired as an assistant principal, shares, “We can all spark change by doing the things we LOVE with PASSION and COMPASSION. Each of us has the capacity to make a positive change through giving the gift of our time, talents, and presence right where we are.”

It’s important for the seniors to remember that they can all create change in small ways, but also that small increments of change can quickly snowball into a huge impact. It’s easy to do something good for your community with the resources you have, something as simple as your time, like Mr. Reidy said.

Mr. Covert, the senior class guidance counselor, offers some practical advice regarding the future. “Research your future often,” he says. To ease their minds, he advises students to research potential schooling options, employment opportunities, and their wanted careers to have a plan of direction for the future. 

For students feeling overwhelmed, be sure to ask about scheduling an appointment to talk things through with him! He is a great help and has even learned some popular slang that can provide some comic relief.

Mrs. Culver, a business teacher at MASH who taught half of the senior class when they were freshmen taking career development, offers short but sweet words. “Be a sponge,” she says. 

While this may come off as a little strange at first glance, she wants students to absorb everything around them. From homecoming dances to math tests, she wants the seniors to create as many memories as they can to take them into the future. She also wants students to learn as much as possible because soon they will be out on their own in the real world.

While things may still seem scary or overwhelming, the moral of the story is that things are going to be just fine. No matter what they end up doing, the students of the senior class are going to be successful in their futures. They’ll accomplish things that will make the district proud. But until then, try to not to stress too much.