So Now You’re a Sophomore


Xavier Maier, Editor

Class of 2019,

You are no longer freshmen. It is a new year with new respect. So enjoy it, but keep in mind that with great power comes great responsibility. Remember, you are a year older, and the incoming freshmen look up to you to some extent. You have learned how to at least act like you know what you are doing. You have grown a little, so show it. Also remember that you still have a lot to learn; you are not upperclassmen. Although you have new responsibilities, you have a lot of growing room to fill before you can fit into that graduation gown. Do not worry though, I have some tips that will make your move into sophomore year a whole lot smoother.

Without further adieu, here is my finely-tuned and quadruple-refined advice for your upcoming year.

  1. Participate. Try to do something for the school that is not academic, like a club or a sport. You will not be able to get the whole high school experience if you avoid opportunities and stay in your comfort zone. High school is about finding things you love, so try some stuff. There really is something for everyone, and if you do not at least attempt something then you are missing out.
  2. Do not settle. If there are negative people or bad influences in your life that you want to distance yourself from, do it. There is no point in hanging on to someone who does not truly appreciate you. Be your genuine and sincere self, and good friends will follow. Allowing people who are not so great to weigh down your true self only hinders you.
  3. Reach out to teachers. Throughout the rest of your high school career, you will face far greater challenges than almost any you did during freshman year. Be prepared to rise above them using all the resources available to you, especially teachers. Having trouble with an assignment is a normal thing, but if you are overwhelmed with something and do not think you can overcome it yourself, do not be afraid to ask for help from your teachers. In doing so, not only will you progress in your studies, but you will also be able to build more personal relationships with your teachers, which will really help your education in the long run.
  4. Learn from your mistakes. You are going to make them, and there is no way around that. The only thing you can do about it is grow and build on them. When you are in another situation similar to the one you messed up in, just remember it and use your past experience to make the right decision. Mistakes in high school can be anything from a bad grade to a social problem, and if you allow them to knock you down for too long, then it will be harder to recover. Pick yourself up, and rest assured knowing that when another tricky scenario rears its head, you are all the more prepared to handle it.
  5. Be confident and mature about everything. Always be the bigger person. That is obviously far easier said than done, but the best way to rise above the freshman stereotype for sophomore year is to show people how much more than that you are. You are not immature just because you are a freshman or a sophomore, and it is easy to think everyone sees you that way. Show them how much more you can be. Have confidence in yourself to be a great student and person, and you will be. Succumbing to the stereotype that freshman are immature is what causes them to fuel it, so now that you are a sophomore, remember what that felt like. Remember to not only rise above and beyond those expectations, but to also treat freshman with the respect they deserve, yet see so rarely. After all, that was you just a year ago.

High school is exciting, but it is brutal. You have a whole year of experience behind of you, and just take comfort in the fact that you can face your remaining three with freshman year under your belt. Some say it gets harder as you progress through high school, and some say it gets easier. It comes down to your outlook on it. If you squeeze every last drop out of your high school experience and see it as a positive thing, it will be one of the best times of your life. If you are negative about it all the time and just grit your teeth and sprint through, you will look back with nothing but regret in your heart. So seize the opportunity. To quote John Mellencamp, “Hold on to sixteen as long as you can. Changes come around soon, make us women and men.” Whatever you do, do not waste it. Then when it is time to make that transition into adulthood, you will be ready.

Congratulations on your step up into sophomore year. Each and every one of you is ready.

Yours truly,

Xavier Maier, Class of 2018