Year of Character

Growing up and adapting into young adulthood involves discovering one’s passions for their future–a task that requires utilizing lots of time, experimenting in endless opportunities, and testing new waters. This is a struggle for high schoolers because they must waste their beginning years fulfilling mandatory curriculums and soon enough, are only limited to a minimal two years (junior and senior year) to seek out their actual interests. This is why senior year should not be excluded from our high school careers. After all, it is a pivotal time before being pushed into adulthood where we’re able to create more friendships, take chances, and uncover more facets of ourselves that will build in our character and future.

TODAY – Everett Collection

Dismissing senior year is like removing the funniest and most memorable scene in a movie. In the film, The Breakfast Club, five seniors with contrasting characteristics and differing interests find themselves in detention–a dull and boring situation in everyone’s high school experience. They all sit separately in their own corners, too nervous to speak and break the rules. This “boring” situation climaxes in a scene where these dissimilar teenagers with backgrounds going from rebellion to outcasts and book smarts come together and start dancing on the tables. They bounce off each other’s confidence in order to let go and finally step outside their comfort zones. This was an evolving moment in their new friendship and it eventually adds to their futures. Without senior year, this hatching camaraderie would have never blossomed and it shows the precious potential that senior year is able to offer.


In my experience, I picture senior year will be a moment of relaxation transitioning from the pressure of junior year. Having hopes to attend certain universities has a large effect on my class schedule and grades. My GPA and test scores become essential tools to determining my eligibility into these school and that becomes a chore tiredly fueled toward homework and studying material and subjects that are burdensome and boring and not pleasurable and beneficial. This has forced me to admit into classes with no correlation to my aspiring occupation due to credit requirements. And so, while the first three years of high school dedicate themselves toward fulfilling general curriculars, senior year allows students to have more variety in their schedules and dig deeper into their occupational and subject desires.


Jed Jacobsohn – Getty Images

Senior year for many people is also a year of high hopes and bigger opportunities. Kobe Bryant, professional basketball player of the National Basketball Association, was only a normal teenager playing amatuer basketball at his high school. He dedicated his last year toward training and growing as an athlete. Little did he know, he would lead Pennsylvania-State into the championships only months later. Because of his time and sweat fumed into his senior year, he grew in his skill and uncovered more opportunity.


Boy Meets World – Mashable

Despite the many pros of senior year, it is understandable that various students urge to leave high school as soon as possible. While some individuals wish to experiment in various courses, others want to pull away from this continuous cycle of high school. American novelist, Walter Kirn, supports this notion in his essay, Class Dismissed, where he finds senior year a “holding pattern, a redundancy” and how students might as well “start early and read ‘Moby Dick’ for pleasure” rather than misuse their time toward working and receiving an unnecessary grade. Yes, Kirn makes a valid point, but he fails to realize that senior year is not only centered toward academic courses. This path to “redundancy” all equates from the student’s choice to whether or not to fill their schedule with uninteresting, typical classes or fun and enjoyable courses. They have the option to try new and fascinating classes that are not, as Kirn says, “restless” and “a way of running out the clock on a game that has already been won.”

Senior year is a necessity to developing unexpecting friendships, stepping outside the line, and reaching new heights as an individual. It is a time of exploration. It is a time of unlocking new doors and really unraveling different components of yourself and where you fit as a person. It is year of less worries and finally–a year of becoming your own character.tumblr_n6vru8y6jh1siyrhqo1_500.jpg

Graduation – Mixtape


One comment

  1. David Theriault · March 19, 2016

    Loved this. Thanks.


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