Managing Editor Karen Zhang gives advice to underclassmen about high school


Karen Zhang

Dear underclassmen,

I’m a senior, and as you probably all know, the last two months of my high school career have disappeared, just like that.

There are a couple of things I regret not doing—going to prom, watching Holiday Spectacular, being in the pit for the spring musical—but really, I can sum this up into one thing I didn’t do: listen to advice from upperclassmen and teachers.

(Not to toot my own horn of course, but because they truly did have the most insightful advice to give.)

For example: start early. Whether it’s starting on homework the day you get it, or researching colleges and scholarships before senior year, starting early will give you the time you need to be able to not feel under so much pressure but still make informed decisions and actions. The more you let things pile up, the more stress you’re under.

Senior Karen Zhang (left) poses for a photo after an orchestra concert. Zhang said she enjoys the feeling of community with orchestra

Something I had to learn the hard way: ask for help when you need it. There’s no shame in asking your teachers for extra help in a class that you struggle in. Yeah, I felt a little embarrassed because I had to admit I wasn’t grasping concepts as well as my peers, but asking and receiving help got me one step closer to where I wanted to be.

Get involved. High school is what you of it. I know, it seems like everyone tells you this, but it’s really true. Watch the spring musical. Go to a Comedy Sportz match. Go all-out for Homecoming week (I finally did for senior year, and it was the best Homecoming week I had). Sounds cheesy, but it’s high school, what do you expect? You don’t have to join 30 different clubs to get involved. These small moments add up and this time slips away fast: one order from Gov. Holcomb and my senior prom, my last ever orchestra concert and my graduation is gone.

And that’s really what these all add up to: enjoy your time in high school. These four years could be the best four years in your life. I wish I had did more things that I wanted to. Not because of my parents and definitely not because of college and boosting my resume, but because I enjoyed them. Just go for it! There’s so many actions that I didn’t end up taking because I was embarrassed or scared of failing. Looking back now, if I just did the things I wanted to, I know the memories and experiences I would’ve made would’ve been worth whatever fears I had.

Best wishes,

Karen Zhang

The views in this column do not necessarily reflect the views of the HiLite staff. Reach Karen Zhang at [email protected]