More than just freshman year

The first year of high school, often goofed off, is actually a time to set standards


Photo by Carli Sharp

Freshman Lucas Sharp, Ben Goesl and Conner Chandler form a group study session for their next biology quiz.

“Does he like me?”

“Why do people keep calling me freshman?”

“Where is the bathroom?”

Freshman year is an awkward time for everyone. But many don’t realize that freshman year is also vital to one’s success in high school. Come on freshmen, get it together! It only matters if your teachers like you. People are calling you “freshman” because you are one. Class is important, you can hold it in!

Freshman year is when standards for the rest of high school are set, study habits are developed, and class rank is established. Ask any junior or senior, freshman year needs to be taken advantage of. You will never have this much free time again. Study for the ACT. Make high As on every paper. Look into colleges and develop an idea of what you want your career to be.

After freshman year, you find out your class rank. You can’t always help the kid who didn’t read or study, because next year, they’ll be competing with you. Some people will tell you that class rank doesn’t matter, and to some extent, it doesn’t, but in order to be accepted into many colleges, you have to be in a certain percentile of your class.  Studying is important, no matter how easy the subject. The more you study, the more information you retain.

Develop good study skills your freshman year so that later on, you don’t have to figure out how you learn best. If you wait until next year, your lack of study skills will haunt you. Determine your preference between ACT and SAT, and study for that test. Some colleges offer guaranteed merit based scholarships, all you have to do is have a certain score on a standardized test.

Every grade you make counts. That doesn’t mean that you should freak out if you make a B, but that you shouldn’t blow off assignments because they’re daily grades. Junior year will be the first year that you get excused college visit days, but that doesn’t mean that you should wait. If you think that you really want to go to a college, visit early and start networking.

Sometimes, people don’t figure out what they want to do until late in their lives, which is fine, but for people who want to go to college right out of high school, it is important to have an idea. If a subject interests you, buy books about it and read them over break, sit in on classes, or talk to people who made it their career.

Freshman year is about making priorities and striving to be the best you can be. Set your goals high, work hard, and get fresh for success.