The Evolution of a High School Student

By Holly Bailey

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By Holly Bailey | Staff Writer

May 28, 2014



As I reflect on the moment when I stepped out of my Dad’s car on a special August morning in 2010, I like to imagine that this past me, this first-time high schooler, was soaking in the symbolic significance of entering a new phase in life.

In reality, I was clinging to my freshly printed map and internally freaking out about getting lost in a school of 265 students (I originally attended Bishop Diego High School).

My, have things changed.

Perhaps no other four years of life are marked by such a monumental and rapid personal evolution as high school. This period is the transition from a young and naive teenager to a (semi-mature) adult.

By the end of the journey, we realize that some things are far less important than they once seemed, while others have become more important than we once realized.

There is no better environment for growth academically, emotionally, socially, spiritually, and physically than high school: everyone’s in the same boat, albeit at varying levels of flotation.

Academically, I honestly peaked in 11th grade. My hard-core study skills learned in APUSH have increasingly gone into remission as senioritis continues to ravage my motivation. However, these skills are lying dormant within me, and will be greatly appreciated in college.

Elsewhere in the academic realm, it took a few years to realize for myself that grades are truly just a letter. I received the first B+ of my life in 11th grade, and along with it the realization that the most important thing is that I tried my best. After the fact, I knew I did everything I could have done and should be proud of it. We all have our strengths and weaknesses.

Socially, perhaps the most important thing I have taken away is the fact that this aspect of my life isn’t the only part. Being the ultra quiet kid, I used to freak at the thought of not knowing who I would hang out with at an event, or even at lunch. Today, however, I have such a great group of friends that I sincerely cherish and am thankful for. One of these ladies is my best friend of nearly a decade, who I reunited with when I transferred to DP junior year.

quote inspire

A piece of senior wisdom

As I walk the track for a mile every morning in P.E., I revel in plugging in my headphones while unplugging from the rest of the world. After, I can’t help but notice many freshmen and sophomores scrambling to join a group, or looking uncomfortable walking by themselves. It’s okay to be alone sometimes — it’s healthy, it’s amazing. It’s a learned realization.

Elsewhere, I know many don’t like to discuss this aspect of their lives as openly as others, but spiritually I have grown so much stronger in my faith and in living out what I believe in — not for my parents or even myself, but for God.

Physically, I went from 5’0″ to 5’1″. ‘Nuff said.

All in all, I am by no means complete in anything I discussed above, but I have hopefully laid down the foundations for a great life equipped with the skills and maturity necessary for the future.

While I may have missed the significance of my entrance into high school, I will definitely not miss the significance of my exit from it.

I know that when I step onto the Charger Stadium on a special June afternoon in 2014, this graduating high school senior will be confidently soaking in the ceremonial significance of entering yet another new phase in life and fondly remembering the years that brought her to that moment.

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