By Matt Schkolnick, Editor-in-Chief
To my fellow seniors,
The time has come. Yes, the time we have all dreaded since we entered Governor Livingston High School in Fall 2011. For some of us, the next few months will be a stress-free time where we can relax and arguably make the most important decision of our lives. For others however, the next few months will be miserable, as we hopelessly wait for either acceptance or rejection letters from our dream schools to come in. I hope that this article not only offers some reassurance, but also gives you some tips on how to help deal with this whole situation.
I am a firm believer that every single one of us will end up in the place we were meant to be. It might sound a little corny, but I truly believe it. The biggest mistake any of us can make is setting our hearts on one school. Every senior across the country has that one school that they would “kill” to go to. I have one, and I’m sure you all do too. The most important thing is to keep your options open, and come to terms with the fact that we all aren’t going to get into our first-choice schools. By setting your heart on one school and having a mindset that you will only be happy there, is simply setting yourself up for disappointment. Instead, and what hopefully some of us have done, is make a list of a decent number of schools and realize that we would be happy at ANY of them. By doing this, we are keeping an open mind to all of our options; this is vital throughout the application process.
The great part about college is that it truly isn’t about where you go, but like most things, what you are able to make of it. We have all heard the stories of CEO billionaires such as Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, and Mark Zuckerberg who are actually college dropouts. I’m not telling you to drop out of college once you are in, but there is an important lesson to be learned from these men. Despite the fact that they did not receive a degree, they were able to make something out of the education they received while they were there. Contrary to popular belief, going to Harvard doesn’t guarantee anyone becoming a millionaire, and going to Union Country College doesn’t mean you’re going to be a garbage man. If you attend all of your classes, make personal relationships with your professors, and gain internships throughout college (and among other things), you will have the opportunity to be successful no matter what college you attend. I promise you that it doesn’t matter where you end up, but rather what you are able to make of your education.
Hopefully all of that was somewhat reassuring, however I now want to shift over to offering some tips that will lead to a successful senior year. The other day I ran into a little situation. It was Thursday, and I had been assigned math homework that day that I knew would take me an hour or two to complete due to the fact I really wasn’t understanding the material. I had just gotten home from my soccer game at 6 PM, and my best friend from Millburn had a game at 7 PM at Millburn High School. I had talked to him earlier in the week about potentially going, and he had mentioned that he had really wanted me to go, and it would mean a lot to him if I made it. That afternoon I came to the realization that I wouldn’t have enough time to finish my math homework before going to the game, meaning if I was going to go, I would’ve had to stay up really late. It wasn’t until about 6:30 and after I had thought about it for a while, when I decided I would go to the game and skip out on my math homework.
I almost got mad at myself for even questioning not going and staying home to do my math homework. Here I was, my senior year of high school (supposed to be the most relaxing after working hard for three years), and I was about to stay home rather than see my best friend play in a game that meant a lot to him.
As crazy as it sounds, the majority of us will be packing up our things and leaving in just under 10 months. In just under 10 months, we will be leaving the small towns of Berkeley Heights and Mountainside for bigger and better things, something known as the real world. Our time is valuable, especially our senior year, and I advise you all not to waste a second of it. Before we know it, it’ll be June and we’ll be graduating, and then soon after it’s off to college. Some of us have been together since kindergarten, some of us since middle school, and some of us just met last year. However, we all have in common that we attended Governor Livingston High School, something I hope none of us will ever forget. Even if we all say we can’t wait to leave, GL will always hold a special place within all of us, and we will always remember our friends and memories that we made and had here. Make the most of every moment you have between now and August, because when we leave, things start to get real and we can no longer rely on our parents or teachers to baby us through things. But until then, do whatever you want, because in the scheme of things, missing one homework assignment to go out and make memories with these amazing people is probably worth it.