2018-09-13 / Views

‘Elderly’ advice from grad: like what you do

A column by Grant McPherson

School bells are ringing and there is homework to be done.

The feeling of not being in a room taking down notes and looking at a white board still hasn’t set for me. As a recent graduate of Central Michigan University, it is a weird feeling to not be back on campus at this time of the year. It was something I always looked forward to during the dog days of summer.

Students here in Leelanau County might not feel the same about high school. But college is a whole new feeling. Looking back at my high school years, I never looked forward to going back to school either.

As classes got underway in my first year of high school at Rochester High School, I was a tiny fish in a big pond. I didn’t know that many people and struggled to find classrooms in the school complex.

After a week, I met a few friends and found the best way to classes. I thought I had it all figured out, but navigating was the easy part. When I started to take difficult classes, I had to buckle down.

I always seemed to struggle with science. When it came to physics — really, anything in science that had to do with math — I immediately worried.

My friends and I always said, “Numbers don’t belong in science.”

When it came to grades, my parents were always there asking how I was doing. My parents would randomly go to the schools online site to check my grades and ask frequent questions about what I had been doing.

Sophomore year was even better, with sports and being involved at the school to meet new people each day.

I used to dread going to school, until my junior year of high school. I stopped fighting with myself on homework, studying for tests and settled in as a student who was doing his best to find the right college.

Junior and senior year feel like a blur to me, though. The two years consisted of looking for a good college, studying to make sure I had good grades and competing in cross country and baseball.

One of the only memories I have from the two years is my favorite. Homecoming my junior year was one to remember, as the struggling football team was able to earn its first homecoming win in quite a few years. At the game, I met friends that I still talk to this day, and we had the best time.

I was part of a graduating class with about 320 students, so it wasn’t hard to find friends and people to hang out with during the weekends and at sporting events.

Being a part of a big graduating class, and then coming up here and seeing the smaller number of students, I would have rather attended a school in Leelanau County. Small classes seem to make for close friends.

Most county students know each other. At my high school, one could graduate and not know most graduating seniors.

And county students seem to be acquainted with their counterparts at neighboring schools. I knew some of the students I had ran against in cross country and played against in baseball.

School is so much more than going to classes, learning and moving on. It is where memories are made, although today’s students may have a hard time believing that. It is where young people find friends that can last a lifetime.

I’m not one to be giving out elderly advice, but I’d like students to remember one thing: Find something you enjoy doing. It’s an axiom I was told every day at school. If you don’t enjoy your job or what you are doing, then find something that suits you.

Waking up for work and being miserable isn’t worth it. I have found something that I enjoy doing, and I hope all students can find something they enjoy doing as well.

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