The Smoke Signal Pascack Valley High School
June, 2016 Volume XII, Issue I
“Where there’s smoke there’s fire”
Senior year: not the end, only the beginning College and careers soon to come
Photo by Kyle Comito
PV seniors gathered in the new gym duing lunch on “Decision Day”, May 2, to show off their new college apparel and take pictures with their friends. By Brianna Ruback Associate Editor in Chief Senior year (noun): \sēnyər yir \ 1. the fourth, final, and arguably most desirable year of high school As high school students in our last semester, we are soaking up what is left of our time as “big fish in a small pond.” While we have enjoyed the wide variety of privileges, such as leaving school grounds to go out to lunch, sitting front row at the much-awaited Friday night football games, and having access to the school parking lot (though there is the notorious Stonybrook trek for many), these days are passing before our very eyes. Soon enough, we will be saying our farewells and going off on our own paths. For the soon-to-be college students, there is an abundance of new opportunities that they will be granted as part of the “college experience.” In college, there is significantly more flexibility when creating a class schedule. One of the main purposes is to gain real-world experience for their future careers; therefore, students can choose classes of their liking. While many colleges have their own specific requirements, they are far less restricting than those of high school and do not hinder one from pursuing something that they are genuinely interested in. The privilege of picking classes enables students to select the time that they will be attending in accordance to their own wants and needs, which is definitely a benefit for those who are not early risers. Furthermore, one of the major differences between high school and college is that in high school, you have to be there, while in college, you want to be there.
In addition to the vast array of academic opportunities, there is also newfound freedom that is acquired in college. PV senior, Chelsea Lee, explained that she is most looking forward to “living a different lifestyle and becoming (more) independent.” Senior Jack Ottomanelli, who is considering a school in North Carolina, agreed. “I’m most excited to live somewhere new,” Ottomanelli said. For those who will be living on a campus away from home, they will no longer be forced to succumb to parental rule, as they are inevitably more self-reliant and and will be able to make more autonomous decisions. While the departure from high school and separation from long-time friends may be emotional for some, the idea of going to an entirely new school with a student body consisting of completely different people is one of the most sought-after features of breaking away from the previous high school clan. Sarah O’Reilly explained, “I feel like we have been friends with the same people since we were five (years old), so it will be nice to meet new people.” In college, we are likely to encounter people from all over the country with different cultures and backgrounds, and they will have their own unique experiences to share. These experiences may contrast what we as high school students living in the confining bubble of suburbia consider “the norm.” This will allow us to gain new perspectives and broaden our horizons. “I am excited to meet new people and just be exposed to different ways of looking at life,” senior Victoria Oliveira said.
In high school, many of us are typecast. Whether you were known as the jock, theatre kid, or brainiac, these labels do not have to be everlasting. In college, it will not matter who you were in high school because now, you can be anyone that you want to be. The introduction to a new environment diminishes that ever-so-present need to fit in because there are more opportunities to find your
place and discover who you truly are. With less than five months until graduation and seven until college, the days are fleeting, and all that seniors can do is make the most of what is left of our high school experience. While entering a world that seems so foreign may be daunting, we need not worry. Now that we are given the means to turn our dreams into our reality, the possibilities are endless.
Photo by Rebecca Silverman
Published on Jun 27, 2016
In the final print edition of the 2015-2016 school year, the Smoke Signal bids farewell to this year's crop of Seniors with a newspaper high...