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Students, staff, alumni give advice to freshamn

The+freshmen+class+%28including+Khyree+Hamel%2C+Sydney+Wilson%2C+Keondre+Pierce%2C+Ellie+Keessen%2C+Jacob+Gravlin%2C+Jessica+Lawton%2C+Corey+Chapman%2C+Keegan+DeKuiper%2C+Paris+Collins+and+Skylar+Epplett%29+was+welcomed+into+the+building+during+orientation+on+Monday%2C+Aug.+28.+%28Emmalee+Dykstra%29%0A
The freshmen class (including Khyree Hamel, Sydney Wilson, Keondre Pierce, Ellie Keessen, Jacob Gravlin, Jessica Lawton, Corey Chapman, Keegan DeKuiper, Paris Collins and Skylar Epplett) was welcomed into the building during orientation on Monday, Aug. 28. (Emmalee Dykstra)

The freshmen class (including Khyree Hamel, Sydney Wilson, Keondre Pierce, Ellie Keessen, Jacob Gravlin, Jessica Lawton, Corey Chapman, Keegan DeKuiper, Paris Collins and Skylar Epplett) was welcomed into the building during orientation on Monday, Aug. 28. (Emmalee Dykstra)

The freshmen class (including Khyree Hamel, Sydney Wilson, Keondre Pierce, Ellie Keessen, Jacob Gravlin, Jessica Lawton, Corey Chapman, Keegan DeKuiper, Paris Collins and Skylar Epplett) was welcomed into the building during orientation on Monday, Aug. 28. (Emmalee Dykstra)

Emmalee Dykstra, Feature Editor

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Freshman year can be seen as one of the most difficult times in a teenager’s life.

Moving to a bigger school and meeting more people than just the ones in the current grade can terrify anyone, and there is almost always the notion that everyone hates freshmen.

While it may be scary, freshmen need to know that even though upperclassmen may go on and on about how “annoying” ninth graders are, most upperclassmen are actually there for them as mentors and will always listen and give advice because they were in those shoes just a few years ago.

Many times throughout the final year of middle school, teachers tell the upcoming freshmen that things will be much harder, and while that is true, these high school newbies learn to adapt to the situations they are put through and can get through just fine.

Senior Chuckie Anthony expressed his No. 1 fear entering his ninth grade year: “I was most scared of the school part itself. Teachers were always telling us as eighth graders that in high school, things get harder all the time, but, in my opinion, it’s not that much different except how the classes are set up. The teaching is the same, and if you just pay attention and come to class, you should be fine.”

Junior Abbie Ginman shared the same unease as many freshmen: getting lost.

Ginman said, “The thing I was most scared about in freshman year was getting lost, but it didn’t happen at all, and it only took me about a week to figure out my way around. If I ever did get lost though, I could just ask an upperclassman for help.”

Freshman year is not always about the fears one experiences. There are many exciting aspects to the first year in a brand new atmosphere: high school football games, pep assemblies, spirit week, and many more clubs and activities than middle school.

It also is a gateway to many new memories that will stick with students for a lifetime.

Sophomore Olivia MacDonald said, “I was most excited to meet new people and hopefully create new friendships. I was also excited to finally be doing high school sports. My favorite memory from freshman year was Homecoming because it was my first one, so walking into school and seeing it all decorated was super cool.”

If there is one thing that administrators, teachers and all students want as a school, it is for everyone to do well and enjoy themselves, even as a freshman. If anyone knows advice to give, it is fellow students who have gone through what freshmen are about to.

Junior Josh Grigsby offered some of his best advice to his peers: “Get a route that you take to all of your classes and actually try to get good grades because all four years of high school count. If I could change one thing from freshman year, it would be that I would try to get better grades because even though they weren’t bad, I could have tried harder and that would been more beneficial to me now.”

This, to a lot of upperclassmen, is the most crucial part of freshmen year, along with staying true to oneself, and getting involved.

Outside of fellow students, freshmen can seek advice from staff members, just as they would the upperclassmen.

English teacher Jolynn Walek tells the freshmen, “Start off on the right foot by being positive, hardworking, friendly, and accepting of everyone. It’s okay to be nervous or anxious, but remember that all staff members are here to help.”
Finally, if there is anyone who could give some of the best advice, it would be an alumnus. They have gone through all four years and can tell what is best to know.

Hannah Carlson, a 2017 graduate, said, “Take advantage of every opportunity you are given and get involved because the four years you spend at the high school go by fast. If I could change one thing about freshman year, it would be working harder and studying more because your GPA is built your freshman year and it is hard to get it up once it’s down.”

Freshman year can be scary, but with all of the support given by upperclassmen, staff members, and even graduates of Shores, the incoming ninth graders should be prepared to begin the next chapter of their lives.

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