This summer we are sharing stories of charter public school sector seniors (now graduates). Check out the 2022 WA Charter Graduate Spotlights here!
It’s time to reflect! What are you most proud of accomplishing in high school? What was most challenging?
The thing that I have the most pride over accomplishing in high school is finding who I am as a friend – what friendship means to me, how I interact in that social dynamic, and seeking out all different types of friend relationships. Discovering and accepting my current presentation in friend relationships has been a long contrived process. When I made it to high school I was no longer able to hide under the library table with my head on a book, I had to brave the social front and I am so glad I took that leap. I now have numerous types of connections: friends that I’ll be moving out of state with for university, friends that I catch a meal with once a month, and I am finally part of a friend group that has been woven together starting in freshman year.
Making these friends in high school was no easy feat. I had to learn how to make those bonds, maintain friendships, and pull away from the relationships that did not serve me. As a senior, I have a group that I sit with everyday – filling the lunch room with laughter, future plans, inside jokes, and sincere empathy. I have value in my time, and the suffering and growing pains that I endured are well worth their weight in gold for the benefit of knowing who I am as a friend, and who I can trust to build community with.
Leaving A Legacy: What advice would you give to future high schoolers and what mark do you hope to leave at your school after you graduate?
Dear future high school student, I advise you to jump in with both feet. Take an open mind, a full water bottle, and a couple of pencils with you where ever you go. Being able to adapt to change, restrictions, and challenges makes you priceless in the eyes of others. Cramming never works, there is always room to ask for help, to make mistakes, and to try again. The best skill you can accrue is how to communicate with anyone. How to take through rough patches with friends, how to ask for assistance or extensions from teachers, and how to ask people walk at a snail’s pace in front of you on the stairs to move faster or move out of the way.
I hope to leave the kind and loving spirit that I have been given by my peers, my educators, and my administrators. They have passed on their well-wishes to me, and I hope to make that same difference on the underclassmen that I have taken under my wing during my time in high school.
Let’s talk about next steps… What pathway are you choosing for your future? What was the college application process like?
If you were to ask any of my teachers about me they would all probably say that I was built for the college application process. Some of my favorite pass times include; building spreadsheets with conditional formatting, writing letters, and typing the most detailed and intricate stories. I know that I am out of the norm when it comes to the college application process. I was dead set on the University of Washington from the minute I came into the world. Finishing all of my papers, resumes, and letter of recommendation requests before everyone else. I hit submit before Halloween even rolled around. Granted I only applied to seven universities (and got into ten with the help of instate auto-enroll programs).
School Spotlight – How did your school help you shine and support your interests?
I was not pushed to do any of my interests, just fortunate enough to be allotted time to do them. I could bring and work on my sewing projects, and read books when there was no work to be done, and I had the freedom to start any club I felt was needed or fit my particular interests.
My school gave me the room to shine. Instead of a school that packed the soil down around my learning brain, I was allowed to sprout on my time. It was not what the school did, it is what the school did not do, that allowed me to go after my interests.
Tell us your hopes & dreams! What do you hope for yourself, beyond graduation, going out into the world?
I hope that I can continue to find spaces that: cushion my fall when taking risks, bring the odd balls all together, and allow time to simply be at grace with myself. I hope that one day I will wake up with a smile on my face, a roof over my head, a job that I enjoy doing, and the ability to buy opera tickets and savor the show on a lark.
I know that I am personally set up to be an adult, with my head firmly attached to a sturdy pair of shoulders, but I hope that my wherewithal for life on my own grants me access to revel in what the world has to offer.