Emmy Welsh-Bon, the high school experience


Photo credit to Dr. Daniel Bon

While the school year is coming to an end for everyone, it’s coming even faster for the graduating Class of 2023. May 17th marks graduation day, but some may be looking forward to it more than others. This is heavily influenced by the experiences of these students in high school, and whether their time was enjoyable or downright detestable.

Emmy Welsh-Bon is a student at Arvada West High School that is part of the Class of 2023, and when it came to their senior year, there are some mixed emotions. Graduating is nothing short of scary, and if a student’s life isn’t together or if they don’t know what they are doing in the future, it’s even scarier. 

“It’s kind of weird being an adult,” Welsh-Bon went on to say about their feelings on graduation, but when it came to their future they were pretty set, “Ever since I was 10 I wanted to go to CSU and I got in, I plan on majoring in bio.”

CSU, or Colorado State University, is a very popular and well renowned school that a lot of Colorado students strive to get into. Welsh-Bon’s plan is to study in biology where they hope to get their major. Getting into a dream college is only part of the battle – what really matters is the road leading up to it.

The high school experience is different for everyone, Welsh-Bon was no exception. “High school was a lot. There’s a lot of trauma involved around a couple years of it, I think that high school kind of sucks for everyone in some capacity. I wouldn’t recommend high school, I think that the education system kind of sucks.”

Photo by Alexis Hickman

The education system has changed throughout many, many years. This poses a lot of questions when it comes to the education of students. One of these being, does high school really prepare students for the real world? Going to school for five days a week, ten months a year, how much of the information do students retain? 

Welsh-Bon had a few words to say about this.

“I don’t think high school prepared me well enough, not at all. I can’t remember my multiplication tables and I don’t know how to spell. I think having this education system, or just the American education system in general, is not great and I don’t think I’m well prepared.”

Another hard challenge that comes with graduation will be leaving friends and teachers behind. Welsh-Bon has quite a few underclassman friends alongside their senior companions, which they’ve claimed is a hard thing to overcome when graduating.

“Having friends that you’ve made over the course of a couple years and then saying ‘peace’ and going to college isn’t the best. I want to stay in contact with them.” Welsh-Bon claims. It can be hard to move on, and though a lot of people wish to stay in contact with their friends, there’s no guarantee that it’ll come to fruition. There are a lot of challenges that come alongside graduation other than just leaving school. 

The road to graduation was undoubtedly a struggle. Three years of schooling is hard enough, but the fourth and final year brings with it its own challenge. 

Something titled “senoritis.”

According to the oxford dictionary, senioritis is a supposed affliction of students in their final year of high school or college, characterized by a decline in motivation or performance. 

A lot of students suffer from this, Welsh-Bon included. They said,  “I suffered from senoritis every single moment of every single day. It’s like, I have not finished my finals for anything yet. I haven’t finished my essays, I think I have five that I have to do, and I don’t plan on doing them.”

It can be hard for students to overcome this mental state, which is so demotivating. The determination and push to go above and beyond slowly falls away and becomes more daunting, like “I’m going to graduate anyways, why even bother?” or “What’s the point anyways?” While for many students, junior year is the most work-heavy, senior year is the one that sends a lot of students down the wrong path. Once you fall behind, everything starts to snowball, which leaves a lot of kids anxious and depressed during an important year of life. 

Welsh-Bon had more to say, “Senior year sucks. You want to give up at every single moment, every time you’re in school it feels like the most draining, terrible, gut-wrenching thing you’ve ever experienced. My advice is to make the best of it. You want to have fun with it or it’ll be the death of you.”

High school is a very wild ride. Welsh-Bon had some closing thoughts on the 2023 year when it came to their experience. “It’s bittersweet, I’d say. High school kind of sucks but also I’m excited to be out and about and going to CSU, meeting new people and having new experiences.”

No matter what one’s opinion on high school is – whether you love it or hate it – at the end of the day, if you’re a senior, it’s done. The 2023 school year is coming to a close.