One year ago today I was knee deep in graduation parties, senior photos, celebrations with my school, and college preparations. Senior year might have been my hardest year of high school, but it was by far the most exciting. It got to be really stressful, but I took in every moment and tried to make the most of it.
I know quite a few high school seniors, and it’s been so much fun to watch everyone get closer and closer to graduation. While I’m no expert on being a high school senior, I was just recently in those shoes and have a few words of advice for those soon to graduate.
1. Don’t stress too much about college.
I was excited for college, but I was also really stressed and nervous. I wasn’t getting to go to my first choice school (more on that later), and I knew college was going to be really hard. Now that I’m in college (and done with my first year of it) I wish I hadn’t stressed so much. Trust me seniors—you’ll have plenty to stress about once you get there! Use this time to get excited buying dorm decor/supplies, meeting/picking roomies, and getting to know your future city/town.
2. Hang out with your friends.
One of the hardest parts about senior year was realizing I was about to leave the life I knew and all my friends. I bawled my eyes out when it was time for those heartbreaking goodbyes. While I had some friends going to the same school as me, all my best friends were spread out at different schools in different states and cities. I had a busy summer before college, but even if I had time to meet up with someone for a quick cup of coffee I tried to do it. Looking back, I should’ve spent more time with my friends. Once you leave for school you realize you aren’t going to drive 5 hours to see them—you get busier than you think you’ll get. Not to mention everyone has different schedules, so FaceTimes are even difficult to make happen (also gas = $$$$$). As busy as you may get, squeeze in an hour or two for your friends wherever you can.
3. Thank your parents.
Guys, THANK YOUR PARENTS. I’m lucky enough to have parents that pay for me. They pay for my school, they give me weekly allowance, they paid for my graduation party, senior photos, dorm stuff, food, my car, my phone, and room. THAT’S A LOT OF MONEY. Not to mention the insane amounts of money to raise me in a good hometown with great schools and keep me involved with so many sports and activities. It’s really easy to get wrapped up in all the excitement of senior year, but please, don’t forget to thank your parents. They’ve done a LOT for you (even if they aren’t paying for your school).
4. Hang out with your family.
As much as you want to hang out with and see your friends, family comes first. You’ve lived with them your whole life and getting to college and starting life without them around is so much weirder than you expect. Mom isn’t there to take care of you when you’re sick, dad isn’t there to check your oil, your siblings aren’t there to hang out with you. I was really excited to be on my own, but you start to realize how different it is without your family around. For me, I loved watching movies with my family. But I found myself watching movies alone or with friends/my boyfriend in college and it made me miss them. While you will go back home to them, it won’t be permanent—and it’s kind of a crazy concept to accept since it’s all you’ve ever known. So soak up the time of mom nagging at you and siblings driving you crazy!
5. SAVE MONEY.
Let me say it again to those who didn’t hear me: SAVE MONEY. Most people don’t get a job right when they get to college because school is the main focus. But it’s easy to get caught up in trying all the restaurants in your new home, coffee study dates, and exploring the town (gas!!!!). It adds up quickly! Saving money over the summer is smart, smart, smart. That way you can have fun with friends but still be able to pay that painful $20 for losing your student ID 😉
Senior year is a year to celebrate 13 years of school and all the people who helped you get there. Soak it up! Take it in! It was the best year of my life before college and I was so glad I have so many pictures and memories to look back on. You’re only a high school senior once, so don’t try to rush it!
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