Image from Pexels.

Image from Pexels.

After over 11 years of hard work and studying, the day has finally arrived: you have just finished your last high school midterm. Everyone has always told you “You don’t have to care after midterms!” so you are elated. You can finally relax, right? Well, not entirely.

While the last semester of high school may seem like an early summer vacation, one should maintain a similar level of dedication-if not the same- as he or she had in the previous 11. Education should not be solely about achieving top marks to please AdCom’s; it should be the medium through which we better ourselves every day. Learning should not cease when meaningful grading does- that is when the real learning begins.

You may love to read, but simply could not find the time to amid the constant onslaught of AP’s and standardized testing. With the absurdity of college admissions tests and essays behind you, now is the perfect time to pick up the book you have been meaning to read since freshman year! For me personally, the second semester of senior year was an opportunity to finally exhale and reminisce over my life to that point. I made sure to reach out to old friends with whom I lost contact, as well as kindle new friendships that will surely last a lifetime. And, I found myself counter intuitively pursuing my academic studies with vigor hitherto unseen; I was finally learning for the sake of learning, not to impress anyone. It was during this phase that I truly appreciated the blessing that is an education- a basic human right withheld from thousands of children around the world.

“But my grades don’t matter anymore!” -High school seniors everywhere

The argument that one’s grades cease to matter post-midterms is flawed; it leads to a false assumption by many students to completely stop trying in school. If you look at your acceptance letter, you will find “conditional on your successful completion of high school”- the politically correct way of saying “don’t mess up”. Now, that doesn’t mean one A- will strip you of your Ivy League acceptance letter, but a few F’s will certainly do the trick. It would be a shame for years of hard work to go to waste because of a lack of effort the last semester of high school.

Lastly, whatever you do, DO NOT engage in foolish senior pranks. I know it may be enticing to finally join your peers in raucous, reckless behavior, but remember that you are putting your future on the line. One suspension and you can lose everything you have worked your entire life for. The last thing you want is a minute of stupidity ruining a college experience you have worked your entire life for.

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