Letter to a freshman


Abby Hissong

Hissong at the Red Sea tailgate freshman year vs senior year.

Abby Hissong , Editor-in-Chief

It felt like a blink of an eye; I’m now a senior. I remember my first day of high school. I didn’t know where any of my classes were, and I didn’t know what to expect. Everywhere I walked, I heard upperclassmen scoffing and giving my rather loud friends looks. I knew what they were thinking: freshmen are clueless. And in a sense, they were right. While it is an undeniable fact that I still have plenty more to learn, here are five of the things I wish someone had told me.


  1. Know which friendships to keep and which ones to cut. The same friends you had in middle school probably won’t be the same ones you finish high school with, and that’s okay. Growing apart is completely normal, and it doesn’t mean you have to be on bad terms with friends that you lose connections with. Make sure that the friends you do surround yourself with are people who make you feel good about yourself and motivate you to be your best self. It sounds cliche, but the saying ‘four quarters are better than 100 pennies’ is absolutely valid.
  2.  Pick your battles. Drama is  prevalent and often an unavoidable part of high school. With so many cliques and labels, sometimes it’s a little too easy to make enemies. That said, try to look at every situation with an open mind and not get involved in situations that don’t concern you. It’s easy to fall into a pattern of listening to and repeating gossip, but if you have a choice in the matter, choose to be the bigger person. In the long run, people will respect and trust you more if you choose to distance yourself from petty drama.
  3. Be realistic with what you can handle. It might look awesome on your transcript if you’re taking five AP classes, play three sports and are a part of multiple clubs, that is just not realistic for the average person. It is so much better to do one thing and do it well than to overload yourself with too many things and be stressed out of your mind every day. While you should always challenge yourself, don’t kill yourself.
  4. Make schoolwork a priority. I cannot stress enough how important this is. Buy a planner. Set aside an hour or two a night to study and do homework. The habits you make as a freshmen will follow you throughout your high school career. As good as it would feel to take a nap after school or binge on Netflix instead of doing your work, when it’s Sunday night and you have a week’s worth of homework to do, you WILL regret it. Pacing yourself is a lot easier than it seems, and it gives you a much more relaxed schedule and feeling of accomplishment. Find a routine that works for you and stick to it.
  5. Don’t be scared to try new things. Whether that means joining a club you’ve been on the border about or trying out for a sport you’ve never played before, go for it. As a freshmen, the world is your oyster. Don’t discount the countless opportunities that are being thrown your way. Extracurriculars are one of the best parts of high school, and often where you make the best connections with people. Do what makes you happy, no matter how nerdy it may seem.

All in all, enjoy the ride.