Sally Minseo Kim, News Writer
High school is a time when students can find themselves and prepare for life in the real world.
During these years, students may feel the desire to repeat the day, the week, or the year; simply put, to go back in time. However, when looking back five, ten, even twenty years from now, is it really worth all the fear and worry?
It’s may be hard to think of teachers as once being high school students, but they have all been through it. Everyone had their own unique journey with obstacles and experiences which shaped them into who they are today.
Mr John. Bertken, the Athletics Director, said, “I would say that my high school years were some of the most fun years of my life. I was playing sports at a high level and gaining new experiences with relationships. School was challenging, but because of sports, I was motivated to keep my grade up.”
Even though he excelled in sports, he said he “struggled” with trigonometry class. It was very important for him to pass the class to stay on the football team.
So he tried his best to raise his grade by sitting with his teacher every lunch to “understand either the homework or to prepare for a test.” However, he still had difficulties passing the test which made him worry as the end of the quarter was approaching.
He said, “I kept thinking, “What am I going to tell me coach? my teammates?” I was so sad and dejected knowing I was failing this class. Then, he [his teacher] showed me my grade.” He received a D+.
“So, instead of receiving an F which is what I got on every test, I learned that you can not fail if you show that you truly care about it and are willing to work extra for it.”
For Mrs. Rachel Smith, MYP and DP English teacher, she described her high school experience as “strained”. Even though she had a passion for cross country, and was very focused, she struggled to set academic goals.
If she could give advice to her high school self, she would say, “school work may be trite, but find your passion within the work and make your experience your own. If something interests you, reach out, research, and push your interests further. Talk with your teachers; tell them what you find interesting within the content and ask how you can pursue that interest within the bounds of assessments.”
Through all these experiences, Mrs. Smith and Mr.Bertken were able to learn and it continued to affect them after graduating high school.
Mr. Bertken said, “I learned that effort counts for alot of things in life, even those things you think you don’t have control over.”
Mrs. Smith said, through her high school experience she became more “driven” in her pursuit of “knowledge and education.”
“I have always loved reading but now realize the value of various resources and time to read.”
For Mrs. Kim Lozano, one of the most substantial moments she had in high school was being in a solo car accident at the age of 16. As she was driving she swerved and ended up wrapping her car around a pole and the person behind her ended up being a classmate and watched the whole thing.
She said, “I just remember thinking everybody is going to know that I was in a car accident. This guy is just going to tell everyone”
Even though this accident was an embarrassing moment at the time, through this experience she was able to gain something that will affect her for the rest for her life.
She said, “I would love to have had that day never happen. Who wants to be in a car accident? But at the same time, if that car accident never happened I would never probably have fixed what was going on in my life.”
While the car accident and embarrassment from people in her high school is something she wish she could fix, she was also able to repair her strained relationship with her father. He apologised to her for not being there for her and expressed his desire to be a better father.
“Repairing my relationship with my father was a God thing, but I am not saying tragedy repairs all things, but for me any sort of embarrassment in high school was worth it.”
She went on and said, “All those bad things end up generally equivalent to good things. So I think that’s why I wouldn’t change anything, but I still had embarrassing moments in high school.”
To the current high schoolers she advised. “You will still say “if only I could have done…” or “if only I would have said this…”, but it’s important for us to learn from our past mistakes because we will never grow and it’s important to experience those embarrassing moments.”