Hello everyone! This is my farewell article as a senior. I wanted to share just a piece of my experience at Brooks these past four years and give my overall conclusion to the school. First, I’m extremely blessed to say that I will be attending THEE ILLUSTRIOUS XAVIER UNIVERSITY OF LOUISIANA! Majoring in biochemistry premed on an Academic Scholarship. Without the support from friends and family, I wouldn’t be where I am today, and I am so excited to start this next chapter in my life.
Now to pay homage to Brooks: I came here as a freshman in September of 2018. I didn’t originally get accepted into Brooks, but my mom convinced me to do principal discretion, where I then got accepted a couple days before my graduation! I was an 8th grade Valedictorian, and I was super ecstatic to be going to my top choice. Arriving at Brooks, I had a complete plan of what I thought was going to happen, and let me tell you: it was the complete opposite. I thought I’d continue getting straight A’s, I would stay focused on still being a smart kid, I’d make plenty of friends, and I would continue playing volleyball and cheering. However, I quickly realized that everyone was smart, everyone wanted to make friends, and everyone had tons of experience in sports. This put things into perspective because I wasn’t used to being like everybody else. I was used to being the star of the show, and now I’m in a school with 1,000 stars. It quickly humbled me and made me look deeper into who I was as a person. During this time period was where I reshaped my personality, experimented with my fashion sense, discovered what work ethic was, and started getting into other extracurriculars that I never thought I would enjoy. I worked hard to make sure I was still on top of my studies and ranked #20 in the class!
Now, it wouldn’t be right to talk about my high school experience without mentioning the huge global interruption that impacted everything about life: Covid. Halfway through my sophomore year of high school, we went into quarantine as a global pandemic struck America, and we were basically not allowed to leave our house unless we were getting the necessities. The world was completely shut down, and I still was expected to write essays, finish math assignments, and log into class in order to finish out the semester. This impacted me largely because I wasn’t motivated to do anything with the world being in such a frenzy. I wanted to get out of the house and see people again. I spent a lot of time stressing about getting work done, maintaining my GPA all while staying sane within the four walls of my room. But I persevered through it, and it was this time period that taught me the true importance of time management and self awareness.
Junior year was still the year of Covid, and classes were completely remote. I had high hopes for this year because I found my groove in the flow of Brooks classes, and I was determined to maintain my GPA regardless of anything going on around me. However, it didn’t always work out like that. With online learning came internet issues, lack of motivation, lack of sleep, and an overall disconnect from my teachers. Cameras were off, assignments were piling up, and I was feeling very overwhelmed. I pulled through this year with the hope of reaching senior year. I was halfway there and I didn’t want to let all of these barriers get in the way of my success. This was also the year I worked my first real part time job, which contributed to my time management skills along with creating a planner on my phone to keep track of everything I had to turn in at what time.
Fast forward to senior year: we’re back in person, and I felt complete imposter syndrome. Being that almost 50% of my high school experience was on a computer screen, I didn’t feel like I was ready to be a senior. I wasn’t ready to graduate, and I wasn’t ready to say goodbye to all of the friends who I’ve known this far and grown to love. During this period, I hit many brick walls such as family passing away, getting a lack of moral support from my teachers, and feeling like life was moving too fast to keep up. There was a point where I just didn’t like school. I didn’t feel supported and I didn’t want to care anymore. Then again I found myself and became encouraged through the hopes of making it to college. My dream of becoming a cardiothoracic surgeon was bigger than any grade I may have received. Bigger than any problem I had in class and bigger than any argument I got into with friends. I realized that I was here for one reason and it had to be done. Now I’m graduating and full of life and happiness to be beginning my next journey.
Looking back on who I was as a freshman compared to who I am as a senior, I love the person that I became. These past four years have been a true journey where I laughed, I cried, I stayed up late, I stressed out, and I got it done. I know that there isn’t enough space in the world to talk about the four years I spent at Brooks, but I did want to point out that you will get there. For all of the underclassmen who may be experiencing similar things that I did, know that it will get done. That assignment won’t make or break your life, and it’s okay to not be the best at everything all the time. Brooks taught me to be whoever it is I want to be because that is the best version of myself I will ever see.