Entering high school can be fun, nerve-racking, and even terrifying (sometimes all at once) for many 8th grade students. Many students' initial portrayals are from movies and television shows that repeatedly show students being shoved into lockers and divided by social cliques; many of which are just urban legends. As an effort to help PS students ease some of these fears, we invited some of our own PS alumni to come and talk and answer questions at our Heading to High School panel.
Representing a variety of local high schools, including Episcopal High School, Strake Jesuit, Awty International, St. John's School, St. Agnes Academy, St. Thomas High School and Kinkaid, the panel consisted of eight diverse and dynamic PS alumni who spoke to the students about their high school experience. They shared insight about their school, activities they are involved in, tips for studying, and much more!
“My favorite part of transferring to high school was the melting pot of people. It was so cool seeing all the cultures from all over the world together in one place. I absolutely love it!” said Sohan Nidamarthy ‘21. Will Young ‘20 added that, “Allowing yourself to be courageous enough to meet new people is an important life skill. Building those new connections and relationships will help prepare you for adulthood.”
8th grade students learned that time management will be a critical tool to their success in high school. “Being organized and aware of your time management will the the most important thing you can do to help yourself succeed. Utilize your free time appropriately for tutorials or studying or homework so that you set yourself up for success.” said Warner Stahlbaum ‘21. Christine Parrish ‘19 added that “being brave and courageous enough to develop positive relationships with the teachers is also important. It builds a level of trust that will come in handy when you find yourself in a sticky academic situation.” She added that thanking the teachers for their time and learning how to build those relationships has helped her over the last four years.
Closing out the discussion Oni Mouton ‘19 added “Be humble! I’m not going to say that one high school is better than another because it may be a great fit for someone else. You just have to find your best fit and make it the best experience for you.” They reiterated that the friendships and relationships with PS students don't necessarily end when leaving PS; many still hang out and stay in touch with their fellow classmates. They said that the relationships in high school will be new and exciting and to take the risk in making new friends. They could be surprised by what they find. They ended the event wishing the 8th grade class the best of luck as they go through the application process and head to high school.
A big thank you to our alumni panelists Oliver Crantz '20, Oni Mouton '19, Rohan Nidamarthy '21, Sohan Nidamarthy '21, Christine Parrish '19, Warner Stahlbaum '21, Leighton Worley '21, and Will Young '20 for their time and wisdom.