Inside The Mind Of The Class of 2021

Inside The Mind Of The Class of 2021

Oh The Decisions To Be Made

All our lives, we count down the day to our graduation year. It seems so far away until the ball drops and the confetti pops, and boom, it’s here. The year we work for as long as we can remember. The year we slip on that cap and gown, walk across that stage, and continue pushing forward.

In three months, it will be the class of 2021 that flips their tassel from right to left. Because of this, every senior is currently in stress mode, trying to figure out the next four years of their life. For the most part, SATs are over, college applications are submitted, and college acceptance letters are received. And after all of that, you know what comes next, decision time. At this moment, some seniors already rep their future university sweater pridefully throughout the hallways while others are still sorting out their options. Either way, there are several other smaller decisions for seniors to make besides which college or university they will attend. Every senior is currently racking their brain with questions about meal plans, dorms, sororities/fraternities, and more. Here is a scoop inside the jumbled thoughts of the senior class, the class of 2021.

After surveying our graduating class, the data revealed that none of the seniors plan on taking a gap year after high school. Although many of them acknowledge the reasons for gap years, like working a full-time job to earn money, traveling, or taking time to figure out their passion, the seniors at our school feel as if this isn’t the best plan for them. Senior Kathy Main explains that taking a gap year would be counterproductive for her personal career goals. As she dives into medicine to become a pediatrician, she is fully aware of the lengthy school journey this requires

“As I will have to do four years of college, four years of medical school, and three years of residency, I want to begin the process as soon as possible.”

Kathy Main

Many individuals in the class of 2021 will be joining Kathy in pursuing a medical profession. About 64.7% of seniors plan to work in the field of medicine. Following this field of study was engineering/technology and psychology. As we do attend a high school centered around medicine, science, and technology, it makes sense that the majority of our seniors are tackling professions in those areas.

When asked about their living plans, 50% of seniors prefer to stay in-state, 35.7% plan to go out of state, and 14.3% are undecided. Senior Sarah Johnson feels staying in-state is the best option for her as it will be less expensive than going out of state. Realistically, she knows she will be taking out student loans to pay for her graduate degree; however, by staying in-state for her undergraduate degree, she won’t need to do the same.

Whether staying in-state or going out of state, 64.3% of the graduating class intend on living in their university or college dorm. Following this was undecided with 21.4%, leaving both the options at home and in an apartment with 7.1%. Senior Melina Velazquez has always imagined her freshman college experience in the dorms. She finds it is the perfect balance between being independent but also having others around you for support. Melina also believes it will help make meeting new people and making new friends much simpler. 

I plan on hanging up a whiteboard on my room door so people in my dorm building can write down their numbers and leave messages. This way, I can quickly get to know the people living around me.

Melina Velazquez

The survey dove into the topic of student life. When questioned about sororities and fraternities, 42.9% of seniors were undecided. Following this, the highest answer was no. Senior Maria Vidal knows sororities require a lot of commitment and responsibilities. As she prefers to focus on her studies and wellbeing, she doesn’t feel like she would be the best member. However, she plans to be involved in organizations and clubs that aren’t as time-consuming as Greek life. In addition to this, 71.4% of respondents have no intention of playing college sports. This data isn’t surprising as the majority of MAST students are used to prioritizing academics over sports. 

When the final deadline does arrive for seniors to choose what university or college they will attend, academics and student life, both receiving 42.9%, were voted as the top determining factors. Senior Alyah Garcia is choosing her future college based on academics as her main focus these next four years is to earn her bachelor’s degree. Out of her options, she is researching which school of medicine has the highest-ranking. She wants to ensure she is providing herself with the best opportunities to be a nurse. Contrary to this, Senior Alyssa Mullings believes that focusing on the student life aspect is best for her when choosing a college. She wants to ensure the college she attends has the same energetic spirit she has. Because of this, school pride and top-tier sports are two factors that are essential to her decision-making. 

I can’t wait to get dressed up in my school colors and cheer on my school in the stands! I loved going to my middle school games, and I can’t wait to get that aspect of school back in college.

Alyssa Mullings

As expected, the idea of starting college in five months is exciting but also nerve-wracking to the class of 2021. The seniors explain that financials, homesickness, making new friends, and being independent are all concerns; however, the largest one seems to be managing school work and maintaining good grades. Senior Kaylah Townsend admits she currently struggles to balance her social life and school work. She can only imagine how difficult having a fun social life and keeping her grades up will be since she will now be the only person responsible for keeping herself on track. 

When the class of 2021 was asked whether or not they feel prepared for college, 57.1% responded that they are between yes and no. Senior Leighann Smith was one of these respondents. She confides that she is mentally ready for the college adventure that lies ahead; however, she can’t ignore her financial worries. Although Leighann believes she will have fun in college, she knows she will probably have to work alongside attending classes and being an athlete.

I just don’t want to miss out on the college experience because I had too stretch myself too thin.

Leighann Smith

As revealed in this article, there are many significant decisions the seniors must make before heading off to college. Juniors, use this article as insight into what decisions you will have to make within this next year. If you are a senior, try your best to make these decisions based on what you want, not friends or family. Although making all these decisions can feel overwhelming, in the end, everything will work out.

Alyssa Mullings
Alyssa Mullings

Alyssa Mullings is a senior at the Medical Academy for Science and Technology at Homestead. Her love for writing developed as she took AP Seminar and AP Language and Composition. She is a full-time writer for The Caduceus Times, the school’s newspaper, where she focuses on feature articles and personal columns. When she’s not writing, you can find her reading self-improvement books or spending time with her family.