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How To Make The Most Of Your Senior Year

By Harper Johnson & Kerrigan Lynch We’ve all but arrived at the end of the year, and the promise of summer vacation has distracted most of us from the realities of where we’ll be when the school year starts up again. Whether you’re stressed about finals and AP tests or just caught up in the […]

By Harper Johnson & Kerrigan Lynch

We’ve all but arrived at the end of the year, and the promise of summer vacation has distracted most of us from the realities of where we’ll be when the school year starts up again. Whether you’re stressed about finals and AP tests or just caught up in the looming task of trying to plan the best summer, everyone’s feeling a little overwhelmed. It’s difficult to even begin contemplating the next school year when everyone’s focus is already so split between finishing out the year and preparing for summer. 

But as the seniors prepare for their departure, they have some commentary to help the future seniors survive. 

It can be intimidating navigating high school. Whether you’re an incoming freshman or a rising senior, there’s no way to feel like you’re completely prepared. The best way to combat any anxious feelings about graduating to the next grade is to talk to someone who has already gone through the whole process and can share some words of wisdom based on their experiences. The Class of 2024 seniors are here to impart some specific tips and opinions to help you feel a little more prepared for the final year of high school. 

The Beginning Of The Year

One of the many perks of senior year is the ability to call a parking spot your own. Whether it be a cute design, your favorite album cover, or just a solid color with your name, painting a spot brings along a sense of independence and ownership. Cruising into school five minutes before the bell rings as the juniors desperately search for an available space, you know that your spot is yours. 

But are the grueling hours of detailed painting in 100 degree heat worth it? 

“I was not about to do that,” Shane Shriock (‘24) says. “We’ve been parking out in the front since junior year…I didn’t need to paint a spot and pay money for it”

With an almost guaranteed spot in front of the school, Shane and his friends didn’t feel like they needed to paint a spot. Although it can be a trek to the school gates, they saved time and money by not painting a senior parking spot.

Other seniors value the opportunity to show off their custom parking spots. Although it can be quite the commitment to paint a cute design, it’s nice to have the privilege of a designated spot every morning. 

“I did paint a senior parking spot and I still have an A set both semesters, so I say it is worth it,” says Casey Wiest (‘24)

Unfortunately, if you don’t have an A set, then you risk the possibility of your spot still being taken. 

“I did paint a senior parking spot, and I would say for the beginning of the year it was worth it. But now that the sophomores are driving, I no longer park in my parking spot,” Lillian Raffo (‘24) says. ”So would I pay 100 bucks again? No.”  

Senior year is full of many memorable traditions and events, with Senior Sunrise marking the beginning of the end. As much as this event creates a remarkable start to the last year of high school, is senior sunrise overhyped? Are the cute photos even worth it? Or is an extra hour of sleep more valuable to tired seniors focused on college applications?

“I thought it was fun,” Finn Day (‘24) shares. “I couldn’t really see the sunrise, but I would definitely go”

As difficult as it can be to set your alarm that early, senior sunrise marks the beginning of your final year at Christian Brothers. Sharing this beautiful moment with your peers is extremely valuable and definitely recommended.

Staying On Top Of College Applications

Going into senior year, we tend to expect it to be a breeze, forgetting about the first three months of college application torture. Essay writing, requesting letters of rec, even just choosing where to apply weighs heavily on our minds. Combined with the busy fall season of Homecoming, Holy Bowl, and maintaining our social lives, the first semester of senior year isn’t always as easy as it seems. 

“The rumor about college apps being hard was definitely true,” says Oscar Reynolds (‘24).

As personal victims of the college app crisis, we’ve witnessed firsthand the pressures of completing your applications before the deadlines. The biggest piece of advice we can give you: finish your applications early. You don’t want to be emailing Mr. Anderson to review your essays the day before they are due. And neither does he.

To A Set Or Not To A Set?

One of the biggest perks of senior year is the ability to not have an A Set. Getting up early is hard for everyone, but with the growing curse of senioritis, getting to school by 8:40 every morning can be a challenge. Luckily, some seniors have the privilege of only having six classes and cruising into school at 10:00 AM. But we’ve all had A Sets for the past three years, and somehow, we’ve made it. Can seniors survive with an early morning class? Is it even worth it to not have an A Set or are you just as well off with seven classes?

Finn explains that he ”sees people walking in with no A Set and it makes [him] sad”. Regretful of his decision to take an A Set, friends without them can be a harsh reminder of constant early mornings and lack of sleep.

How Many AP Classes Are Necessary As A Senior?

Once college acceptances start rolling in, many students let loose and relax regarding school. But what about the students taking AP classes? They can’t just give up on school, especially not with exams in May and the hopeful potential of receiving college credits. As current students with five AP classes on our schedules, it definitely is a struggle to stay motivated, especially when we’re already committed to colleges. 

That begs the question: is it possible to be an enjoyable senior year taking multiple AP classes? Did we make the right decision when registering for classes for last year? Or did we set our standards for ourselves too high, not understanding the oncoming senioritis that would soon consume us?

”It might not seem worth it now, but hopefully when you get college credit it’ll be worth it,” Oscar explains. Although difficult, if you make it through the grueling study hours and tests, you might just emerge one step ahead of the game. 

Senioritis

Despite all of the fun events of senior year, there are some downsides. The most infamous being senioritis. This curse appears to have taken over the majority of seniors this year. But is there a cure?

“I’ve never been less motivated before” says Oscar, a feeling relatable to likely the majority of the entire senior class.

“Just give in” Finn says bluntly. Maybe we truly have no control over this disease that seems to have taken over the Class of 2024.

The Most Important Advice From Seniors

Senior year is arguably one of the most important, fun-filled years of our lives. But our fears of the year living up to our expectations can be overwhelming. Luckily, we’ve had plenty of seniors to inform us on what to do to achieve the best year possible.

Seniors tend to place immense pressure on themselves during their last year of high school. We want our final two semesters to be perfect, but this drive of perfectionism can ultimately harm us. Truthfully, it’s more important to enjoy the moment by living in the present and not focusing on changing yourself or those around you to improve your year.

”In general, it’s never that deep” Finn claims.

It truly isn’t. Yes, colleges and classes and sports and your social life all play a big role in your final experience at Christian Brothers, but it’s more important to simply enjoy your last year without stressing so much about your future. Once you’ve gotten accepted into college, do your best to spend your final moments with your friends, family, and the Christian Brothers community with a sense of gratitude and fulfillment.

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Written by Talon Staff