The digital magazine of J. Sterling Morton West High School

The Sterling

The digital magazine of J. Sterling Morton West High School

The Sterling

The digital magazine of J. Sterling Morton West High School

The Sterling

The Senior Struggle

Seniors struggling with post-high-school plans have help

Class of 2024 is approaching graduation and the start of their futures. The pressure of figuring out their paths and careers is growing, and the struggle is real.

Many students feel unsure about what they really want to pursue as a career: “I feel really anxious about graduating high school because it already feels impending…With all the pressure of starting college applications and essays, me and my fellow classmates are expected to be sure of ourselves,” Claire Staubus, class of 24’ says. Some even feel that college isn’t something worth doing.

Ruben Reyes, class of 24’, echoed a similar sentiment, and added that as he gets closer to graduation, he’s considering professional options other than college.

“I feel college is unnecessary if it’s unpaid for because it takes a long time to pursue a career at the end to just work the same,” he noted. “I can just learn a trade or learn new things through experience.”

Either choice is supported, and Morton West gives a variety of resources to help students become successful. Morton West has its very own college and career center to give every student an idea of what to do. They offer trade school information, FAFSA resources, college fairs, and information and support for students seeking careers in the military or trades.

For example, Morton West will host hits very own trades fair on Nov. 16, where representatives from trade schools and other career paths will share information with students. “This will give students an opportunity to network in whatever career path they’re interested in, and potentially find employment in that field,” said Mr. Connelly, the school’s Career and Work Based Learning Coordinator. said.

The trades hold a financial appeal on two fronts for students because they avoid the higher cost of college while offering paid learning and training, according to Connelly and College and Career Counselor Mrs. Ursetta.

“Many trades include paid on-the-job training,” said Ursetta. “There are so many job openings [in the trades] right now, there’s very high potential for them to walk into a job.”

Class of 2023 graduates celebrate their matriculation.

For students taking the college route, Morton West offers many counselors and staff here specifically to guide students through this complicated process.  For anyone, the transition into adulthood is no walk in the park and makes every decision matter. Beginning high school at home in 2020 presented a challenging start for many high school students’ experiences, and fast-forward three years and getting ready to again move toward the future has some students lacking confidence. Sharing these concerns and worries with adults who are not only experienced but also specialize in helping to guide students into their path can be beneficial and give a better idea to students about what they really want to pursue. Even communicating with other students struggling with the same issues can create a sense of unity and understanding between each student.

Being isolated for 2 years to now becoming the new adults changed the standards of normality, but to understand everyone is going through it as well creates a new normal and a better support system. Every single person has the ability to be successful and Morton has an eclectic variety of resources for each student. Making the choices may be tough but there is always help.

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About the Contributor
Julisa Calderon
Julisa Calderon, Writer
Julisa Calderon, a senior, is a writer for The Sterling, the digital magazine of J.S. Morton West High School. After high school, she is considering doing her general college classes at a nearby community college, and then finishing at a university majoring in nursing. She enjoys shopping, relaxing at home, and going out.

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