Jodie is beijingkids’ student correspondent and is our eyes and ears on the ground. A senior at Western Academy of Beijing, Jodie is also a contributor to the student-run magazine Unit-E. Check back for more of her blogs about student life.
With senior year half way done, my high school career is almost coming to a close along with my childhood. Soon enough, I along with the rest of the graduating class of 2012, will embark on a new adventure that has yet to be written and the stress, thoughts, plans for each student varies. In order to know what everyone else is feeling, I sat down with three fellow students, asking them to reflect on their past years at WAB.
I know that when this year is over, I will miss WAB and high school a lot. How do you feel now that grade 12 and high school are almost over?
Camila Ochoa-Mendoza: I’m stuck about what I should feel – part of me just wants school to be over, but the other part knows that I’m going to miss high school so much and I need to enjoy it while I’m still in it.
Steffie Brader: I’m super excited because it signifies the start of the next major chapter in our lives. Also, this is the time period when we can start to see the effects of our years of hard work as we start getting accepted into universities and planning how we want to live the rest of our lives.
Aaron Kroeber: I’m glad I’ll be moving on to something new. I’ve been at WAB a long time, so change is due. At the same time, it’ll be hard to go to something entirely different and move beyond my roots, but it’ll be good.
What are your plans for the future whether it being just after high school or in the long term?
Camila Ochoa-Mendoza: After high school I’m going to spend my summer holidays doing an intense Chinese course so I can perfect my Chinese, and after that I hope to go to the UK and study photography!
Steffie Brader: I plan on studying business management, hopefully in the UK. After I get my bachelor’s degree, I want to obtain some job experience while also still traveling around the world, exploring different cultures.
Aaron Kroeber: College. That’s my only plan at this point.
I know for me and a lot of my other friends, thinking about the future and leaving all this behind is incredibly overwhelming, do you feel the same way or have any fears for the future? Anything you are excited about?
Camila Ochoa-Mendoza: I’m actually so scared of leaving, because it’ll be the first time I ever move away from Beijing. I don’t know how I’ll adapt and begin a brand new life all by myself, but I’m super excited about the exact same thing. It’ll be such a cool experience living in Europe and meeting new people.
Steffie Brader: I have a few of the normal fears like whether I’ll like the school I go to, whether I’ll make friends, etc. But even though they’re fears, I’m excited about tackling them head-on because it’s a process everyone goes through.
Aaron: No, I’m not really afraid of the future. I’m just excited to start something new.
Do you think high school has prepared for you what’s about to come?
Camila Ochoa-Mendoza: Somewhat, I think that the IB has really prepared me to become more organized but at the same time I’ve been spoon fed everything I need all my life and when I go to the UK, I’ll have to learn to do it myself.
Steffie: To some extent, I think it has. But maybe it’s not so much the classes that have prepared me, but the experiences I’ve had to go through and the people I’ve met.
Aaron: The IB in particular has prepared me for all the new mundane characteristics that life has to offer, but I think that the greater impact has come from the totality of my experience at WAB.
This time of your life is probably one of the most exciting and stressful time you’ve experienced in your high school career, I know it has been for me at least but is this at all what you expected, whether it being high school or senior year?
Camila: Not exactly, during the summer holiday I thought that this was going to be the best year of my life, that I would become really close with my grade and that it wouldn’t be so hard. But it’s been really different. School has been so difficult and stressful and I never have any time to socialize.
Steffie: I’m not sure because I don’t really remember what I expected. All I remember is that I thought I would feel more grown-up, and looking back at some of the crazy and childish things I used to do, I do feel more grown-up
High school can be a scary thing, but it can also be so wonderful. There are so many memories you leave behind but carry with you for the rest of your life. It really does seem like just yesterday when I was walking through the doors for the very first time, starting my freshman year and all of a sudden, I’m in a rush to grow up and as a senior, I wish I could slow down time to not only finish up my never ending pile of work but to also just enjoy being seventeen. I will never forget these past four years.
Photos provided by interviewees.