Staff Editorial: High school survival guide

Five tips from graduating Echo seniors


Maya Nieves

Senior Rachel Katzovitz recieves her cap and gown May 24. The seniors’ last day is June 2, and they will be graduating June 6 at the stadium.

High school is notoriously difficult to navigate, and it’s easy to look back with both a sense of nostalgia and regret. The Echo seniors collaborated to create a list of tips that we wish we knew going into high school. In the list below are our top five pieces of advice for rising freshman and sophomores, because “be yourself” and “follow your dreams” don’t cut it.

  • Join clubs and sports

The easiest way to form friendships is through mutual activities. This is why clubs are a must for underclassmen seeking social connections. Worst case-scenario: you absolutely hate the club or sport and you drop it. It might sound scary, but it’s unlikely you’ll be the only new person. It’s important to take advantage of these opportunities early on in high school. In all honesty, joining a club or sport senior year is pretty uncommon in most cases. As for freshmen and sophomores, it’s a lot more widespread to dabble in extracurriculars. You can definitely join clubs or sports later on, but this will put you in a more isolating position.

  • Do what you want, not what others want

By the time you’re in high school, you’re old enough that you have some sort of identity — you know what sets you apart from other people, and more importantly, you know yourself better than anybody else. When it comes to making a big decision in your life, it’s important to do what you feel is the right choice for you. Don’t let other people decide your fate for you. If you’re somebody who’s impressionable and takes what other people say to heart, it can be really hard to trust yourself. This is easier said than done, but it’s definitely something to keep in mind. 

  • Your grade is your school family, so be nice to them

Senior year is full of social events for seniors specifically, so it’s nice to be on good terms with your grade-mates. You don’t have to be best friends with everyone, or even friends at all, but keep the peace. All in all, this one is pretty simple: keep an open mind and be respectful to your peers. Being able to find a community in your grade, especially senior year, will make your high school experience so much better. 

  • Don’t take things too seriously

In high school it’s normal to get caught up in day-to-day drama and fail to see the full picture. Whether it’s a failing grade or a falling-out with a friend, these kinds of situations can feel like the end of the world. It’s important to remember that 99% of your current problems won’t be problems a year from now, let alone 10 years from now. 

  • It goes fast, especially at the end

Our final takeaway is to make the most of your time. This one is a total cliche, but there is a good reason for it. Senior year, in particular, practically flashes before your eyes. You blink and it’s over. You may or may not like high school, but try to take advantage of literally anything you can in your final year. 

Shout-outs: Wilkes, Nordmark, Merkle, C2 hallway