Dear Freshman: an open letter

Anthony Alegrete, Senior Writer

Just like all other traumatic incidents, I remember my own experiences as a naïve and nervous ninth grader looking for any sense of comfort and security in this new planet. I was suddenly surrounded by people who could actually drive and were superior because of it. I would get lost from class to class, stumbling in thirty seconds late to biology and scolding myself because of it. From losing sleep over my algebra test, to my latest efforts to conquer the Kahoot leaderboard, to wanting to actually go first in a formal presentation, my first year of high school, no matter how crazy, was valuable to me. Freshmen year was a roller coaster that I thought I was too short to ride, but I got on anyway.
However, I would like to congratulate all you ninth graders for surviving the tsunami of change and indecision we call first semester. You all have studied (hopefully), stayed on task (probably), and stayed ambitious (maybe), but no matter how you got to this point, you still did.
You have conquered the formative beast that our teachers call first semester. All jokes aside you have done it, you have proved yourself willing and able to function and even succeed in the high pressure and nerve-wracking situations that high school can bring.
I remember the relief that rushed through my body the moment I answered the final question of my biology final, causing me to jump up and down and fist bump out of the door. Sadly I realized in the same way that many of you will, that all of this relief is temporary, and second semester is coming faster than we all think. No matter how much you now want to curl up in a ball and hide in the corner, be comforted in knowing you at least have one victory under your belt.
However, that does not mean that you are now able to slack off and sweep your responsibilities under the rug. Continue caring about school while juggling the rest of a teenager’s life. With attempting to turn in homework on time, trying to maintain a social life, and engaging in extracurricular activities, high school can be crazy. But no matter the setbacks stay calm and study on. Good luck, second-semester freshman.