The struggle is real: Surviving the last semester of high school with senioritis

Losing all hope, senior Autumn Giaffoglione sleeps soundly in her skyscraper of textbooks. Giaffoglione is one example of the senioritis epidemic that is taking over schools everywhere.

Nicole Buntgen, Co-Editor

7 a.m. School starts in an hour. Your alarm won’t shut up and all you want to do is throw it at the nearest wall and sink even deeper into your warm covers. Your mom invites herself into your room in an attempt to drag you out of bed, with which you respond with a stubborn moan and groan. Mom loses all hope and decides to give up, leaving your room with the door open. Seven hits to the ‘snooze’ later and you’ve finally managed to roll out of bed.

7:55 a.m. Whoops. You grab the first pair of sweats in sight, power-brush your teeth, and speed your way to school… only to be late for the fourth time in a row.

Sound familiar? Any lazy, unmotivated, anti-time manageable senior could relate to the situation above.

According to Urban Dictionary, senioritis is a crippling disease that strikes almost all high school seniors. Symptoms include: laziness, an over-excessive wearing of track pants, athletic clothes, and any type of sweats. Senioritis also features a lack of studying, repeated absences, and a generally dismissive attitude. The only known cure to the epidemic is a phenomenon known as graduation.

Ah yes, graduation. The moment when seniors are free from the crazy world of high school and move into a whole new society called college. But before seniors can turn their tassels and advance into the adult world, the final semester of high school still awaits, and nobody said it would be a walk in the park.

Senior Autumn Giaffoglione knows a thing or two about senioritis. Giaffoglione said she personally feels she has a bad case of the epidemic.

“There are just some mornings when I don’t want to get out of bed. I have to really push myself to get to school,” she said. “As soon as second semester started, I just started getting so much more lazy. I’m losing interest in classes, and I just want to get to college and study for my major already.”

Giaffoglione said it only took her five minutes to get out of bed during first semester. Now, it takes her about fifteen.

Although having to leave your bed every morning may be the most painful thing you’ll have to go through, being a senior does have its ups. Giaffoglione said senior year doesn’t consist of a lot of classes if you get them done in your earlier years of high school. This means more relaxation and more time to focus on your core classes. Aside from scholarships, senior year is a pretty laid-back year, she said.

Unfortunately, with every up comes a down, and Giaffoglione said there’s a lot of stress when it comes to college, careers, and people looking up to you at all times.

“I try to take things day-by-day rather than focus on the future right now, because then that’s just too much stress on myself,” she said. “I’m just trying to pass my classes, and it’s kind of scary that we’re going to be on our own soon.”

Along with passing classes, Giaffoglione said seniors have prom and graduation parties to look forward to. Although she does believe senior year can be easy-going at times, Giaffoglione said the last year of high school is also full of major things to focus on.

“There’s a lot of stress and added pressure on if you’ve applied to college and done your scholarships or not,” she said. “So don’t take senior year for granted. Do as much as you can. You only have one senior year so make it last.”

Senioritis seems to be an outbreak that can be simply summarized in seven short words: You either have it or you don’t. One person breaks that stereotype, however, as she feels she’s reached the midpoint of the plundering pandemic.

“Oh, I’m right in the middle,” senior Morgan Hoeft said. “I don’t want high school to end, but then I do. I want to pursue my career, but at the same time I’m scared of growing up. It’s [college] going to be a lot different than high school.”

Being done with high school means going into the real world and becoming an adult, paying bills, and other things like that, Hoeft said. However, she also said seniors don’t know everything, and that’s what she thinks is the leading cause of senioritis.

“Because we think we know everything, we think we can do whatever we want. This leads to not doing homework and simply not caring anymore,” she said. “We definitely don’t know everything. We haven’t even seen half the world.”

Giaffoglione said she sees senior year as the most laid-back year ever. While some seniors stay true to this attitude, Hoeft said she somewhat disagrees.

“Scholarships, for example. I wish I wouldn’t have waited so long. I always told myself I had enough timelike five months-timeand then those five months are over and I didn’t do anything,” Hoeft said. “Don’t procrastinate on scholarships! Get them done and over with, otherwise you’re going to feel rushed when you’re filling them out and that’s a lot of stress you’re putting on yourself.”

Procrastination seems to be the norm with students suffering from senioritis. Senior Anthony Tebbe, however, hasn’t let time slip away from him during his final year of high school.

“It’s all coming to a close,” he said. “You think you have time for things, but then you actually don’t. You’re like, ‘when did that happen?!’”

Tebbe has been well aware of the senioritis spate that has plagued high school students for quite a while now. Rather than facing the fact that he’s going to have to go through the epidemic at some point during his final year, Tebbe thought ahead of the game and took a road less traveled by to get to the place he is today.

“People see the finish line and just want to cruise across it and take their time. Just because it’s their last year, people think that means it’s also going to be their easiest,” he said. “I saved my hardest classes for my last year. I tried to do this so I knew I had a reason to avoid senioritis and I can push myself through senior year. I’ve basically had this planned since I was a freshman.”

Although many people may want to simply breeze through senior year, the year also consists of many “lasts”. You know… last Friday night football game, last homecoming, last pep rally, and so forth. As many seniors see this is as a sad wakeup call, Tebbe strongly disagrees.

“I think people make it too much of a big deal. I mean yeah, it’s your last time doing something. But don’t dwell on it. Experience the ‘now’ and have thoughts and emotions about it after,” he said.

Senioritis is more than simply slumping through your final year of high school. It’s a widespread problem in high schools all across the planet. So whether you’re a student whose victim of that ‘I could care less attitude’, you’re stuck in the middle and don’t know what to do, or you’ve got your eyes on the prize and you’ve set your focus, senioritis is here, people. It’s alive, active, and rampant in more students than you think. Whether you catch a case of it or notthat’s up to you.

“Treat senior year just as any other year of your high school career. Take classes deemed as difficult just to keep yourself pushed so you can avoid senioritis,” Tebbe said. “You still have a lot of life ahead of you. High school is just the beginning.”