Senior year 101

Watertown High’s graduating class leaves study guide on how to survive 12th grade

The official portrait of Watertown High Schools Class of 2014.

The official portrait of Watertown High School’s Class of 2014.

As this school year comes to an end, the Class of of 2014 will depart.

The freshmen will no longer be on the bottom of the food chain, the sophomores will be considered “upperclassmen,” and the juniors will embark on what is supposed to be the most memorable time of their high school lives: senior year.

Some current seniors are itching to get out; some are longing to stay. Some may have regrets, or wish they had done something differently; some are glad they made the choices they did. However they’re feeling about their last year of high school, they have a few pointers for the upcoming seniors. 

These tips from seniors encompass a few things they’ve learned: Do’s and Dont’s of Senior Year.

1. Do your college stuff early
By writing your college essay in the summer and applying to schools early, a big weight will be lifted off your shoulders.

2. Don’t procrastinate
Don’t leave things for the last minute (applications, scholarship essays, etc.). Do everything in advance.
This applies to junior year, too.
Senior Ashley Smith says that “you can still make [your grades] better this year.” Be proactive.

3. The sooner the better
Read your Senior Thesis book early, and read it completely. Trying to rush through it a week before the dreaded and tedious notecards are due won’t ensure any success.
Budget your time, make a schedule, and stick with it.

4. Know your limits
Don’t take classes that are too hard, but don’t take classes that are too easy.
Senior year should be enjoyable, but not a complete waste of time.
Senior Edgar Mutebi says, “If you have a good academic standing, don’t overextend yourself.”

5. AP Classes
Similar to knowing your limits, know which AP classes will be too hard for you.
Some classes hurt you more than they help you, so investigate each course to see if it’s manageable for you.
Choose them wisely.

6. Avoid “Senioritis”
Don’t start slacking off the minute senior year starts. Try not to get apathetic too soon in the school year, or else you will do poorly — your GPA can still plummet, even as a senior.
Senior year can be harder than junior year, says Heidi Rush: “You are more independent and you have to advocate for yourself.”

7. Enjoy yourself
Remember that senior year is supposed to be fun.
Numerous seniors say to enjoy the last year you have with your friends, your classmates, and your teachers — it will go by fast, and you don’t want to waste this precious time constantly stressing.

8. Don’t stress
Everyone is going through the same thing. If you hit a speedbump, don’t panic.
Senior Cody Hecht reminds us, “All seniors have setbacks.”

9. Yes
If someone challenges you to do the “Polar Plunge”, do it.

–May 28, 2014–