Senior Advice to Freshmen: Get Involved

BSM+gown%2C+tassle%2C+and+honor+cords+to+represent+Red+Knight+graduation+celebrations.

Emma Hoen

BSM gown, tassle, and honor cords to represent Red Knight graduation celebrations.

As the 2021-2022 school year comes to its last couple of months, the school starts to say goodbye to its seniors, but also welcomes the incoming freshman class of 2026. As an insight to a full highschool experience, a few seniors have given their opinions and thoughts about their time here at BSM in hopes of giving advice to the future underclassmen.

Bella Near, a participant of cross country her junior year and medical club senior year, found putting herself out there and talking to people around the school to be a good way to make friends. Not only did she put herself out there, she chose to not be scared when trying to meet new people because everyone would be hoping to make new friends at the same time. However, she was not timid of stating junior year would be the hardest year for her. In case of any disruptions or challenges along the way, Near and many other students found talking to Dr. Steffenson, the school’s clinical psychologist, to be very helpful and inspiring. While there may be some really negative experiences you endure during your time in highschool, there will always be the positive aspects. “Just appreciate everything, the little moments matter,” Near said.

Mitch Dokman, mainly known for his participation in ice hockey, found himself in chess club and other activities around the school to be involved in both sporting teams and clubs as a chance to talk to his classmates inside of school and build connections early on. Different from his other classmates, Dokman found freshman year to be the most challenging as he came in not knowing many people. However, his first year did get better once he met new people. Through the hard times that occurred in ninth grade, Dokman found himself with his friends and spending time with them to soothe his challenges he bore through his years here. With the downs, Dokman will, however, never forget his time playing bubble soccer during his sophomore year. As you start the new year, it will be very intimidating to want to talk to new people. “Join clubs and try to do as many sports as you can because it’s the best way to meet people,” Dokman said.

Freshman year was hard because it had a lot of ups and downs and either you get into it and you love it or it’s really challenging for you, but I think you really just have to stick with it and it gets better”

— Ali Tarnowski

Ali Tarnowski hit a variety of clubs and sports in her four years here, they include dance team, ultimate frisbee, track and field, Nordic skiing, and cross country, for a time period. It was safe to say that participating in all these activities was a great way to branch out and go outside her comfort zone to make friends. In order to go outside your comfort zone and meet people that you don’t think you might be friends with, requires you to push yourself beyond your limits. While that may be a scary thing to do, the friends you make will be the ones you turn to in times of trouble and need. You will be able to lean on a lot of people and some teachers as well to be a source of help. With all the aid you can get at the school, it definitely would be a plus if you had a sibling here before you graduate. While it might be hard to see them go, it will definitely be a time to remember. That being said, you have to stay focused during your first year. “Freshman year was hard because it had a lot of ups and downs and either you get into it and you love it or it’s really challenging for you, but I think you really just have to stick with it and it gets better,” Tarnowski said.

Richard Norman, infamously known for his dinosaur spirit-week dress ups, used to be found on the football field or in a classroom for the speech team. Now, he can be seen doing track and field. Hitting both a sport and a club, Norman was easily accessible to a variety of people and ways to talk to them. Balancing between school, clubs, and sports can be hard, but doing your work will be crucial to a successful experience; as some people will want to not do their work. It won’t be as difficult for incoming students as they will not have to deal with the virtual learning and COVID regulations for schools, but nonetheless, it will still be a whirlwind of emotions. A way to take a break from the stress and exhaustion that school brings, homecoming football games, and football games in general, were pretty fun all of the time. These breaks will only be temporary and you will still need to focus on your school work and the obstacles you will face. “[The most important thing is] hard work. You have to learn to push through a lot of things when you’re in high school going to college,” Norman said.

Just appreciate everything, the little moments matter”

— Bella Near

Ava Montpetit was not shy of anything BSM related with what she participated in: volleyball, cross country, alpine skiing, Business Professionals of America (BPA), Red Knights Volunteer Corps (RKVC), and Medical club. Montpetit was evidently a very social and really involved individual. She was open minded and worked hard because she didn’t regret working hard. If anything, now there most likely are people who regret not working as hard as they should have. With this mindset, Montpetit still found herself in a challenging sophomore year as that is when Advanced Placement (AP) classes had started. Through the AP classes, you can lean on your teachers and your friends you will meet. Especially teachers, depending on the circumstances, are really flexible if you talk to them. As mentioned before, Montpetit is clearly a social butterfly and undoubtedly enjoyed her moments at all the dances, however, she was pretty confident of stating singing Nzamuranza at masses to be a core memory of hers. While the dances were a great way to put yourself out there, sports were a bigger way to engage in conversations. “Sports were a huge way, especially freshman year when you don’t know anymore. Fall sports particularly so you can come into school knowing people. Also having an open mind and attitude when you talk to people in your classes. Just be willing to say hello and talk to whoever’s near you,” Montpetit said.

With all this advice and different senior perspectives, hopefully the incoming freshmen and potentially new students for other grades will have a sense of realism of how to have a fortunate and triumphant experience.