Senior Fall

Amelia Hewson | publishinghaus

Cooper M, Senior

Senior Fall is known amongst high schoolers as the busiest time out of the four years.  Most students must balance test prep, school work, college applications and extra-curriculars this time of the year.  For most of us seniors, this is the most stress we have had to deal with throughout our schooling. Curious about how our peers are dealing with this, we decided to survey Northwest seniors in different stages of their college process to see how their final year was going.

The Summer between Junior and Senior year can be a scary one for most.  With many of us working jobs, taking and studying for standardized tests, and beginning our college applications, free time can be rare.  If you were able to work ahead on your college applications during the summer, while it may be painful, it is worth the extra free time you will have senior fall. The students we interviewed did anywhere from multiple hours of work a day during the summer, to some students doing none. Obviously, the more work you get done during the summer, the more time you have to focus on school and extra curriculars during the school year.  Speaking from personal experience, the best advice I could give to a rising senior, is to put your head down and work hard during the summer because it will pay off.

Coming into school this year, many of us were anticipating an unbearable work load. Having to deal with schoolwork along with college applications and decisions, anxiety was at an all-time high. Throughout our interviews, we were surprised to find that our peers felt little to no stress about the amount of work they currently have. Furthermore, they even said it was more manageable than junior year. One factor that plays into this, is the option to only take 6 classes and have a free period every day. The majority of the seniors jumped at this opportunity and ended up having five academic classes and one art class.  One interviewee said “With my schedule alone, no because I only have 6 classes. I’m in between stress and being okay so if I didn’t have that free period, it would be a lot harder.” Not only do seniors have this option, but they are prohibited by the school to take eight courses. When I asked the college counselors about this, they said that they had tried it and seen it go south. The fact that the school is consciously trying to help us succeed in this process is reassuring.

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Coming into senior year, we did have one pretty great perk to Humanities. After sitting through hundreds of hours of lectures in Raymond and many late nights studying maps and history, we, as seniors are finally free of the three lectures per week and the infamous Humanities tests. Not only are we free of lectures, we were also given our choice of Humanities courses. From East Asian Studies to Music as a Form of Protest, we had a plethora of options and teachers. Personally, this was amazing for me, I was able to pick two great teachers and two topics that were interesting to me.

This is the last year of high school for the class of 2019 and after many years of fine-tuning our study skills and time management, we are up to the daunting task at hand.  With many of us going away to college, we will face the next challenges ahead of us, but we will be armed with the tools for success that Northwest has given us. While it may feel like some of us are drowning in stress right now, I guarantee that if everybody before us was able to fight through senior fall, we can do it too.

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