Opinion: The theory of GlenOak evolution; a study of the classmen in their natural environments

By Jacob Belzer, Staff Writer — Freshman: Now before you go and say freshman year is easy and that they have it the best remember, you were a freshman once.

It is scary, a big new school with big scary kids who have never showered before. It is a big step up from middle school.

The easiest mistake to make is to not take this year seriously. Freshman year actually matters, not just for social status although we all know that if you are not a cool freshman you will never be cool for the rest of your life ever (sarcasm). Seriously, your original high school GPA comes from your freshman year.

With a plethora of classes that are as easy as they’re going to be in high school. Talk to your teachers and DO YOUR HOMEWORK, it will make your life easier for the next four years. Socially, there is one piece of advice you need to hear. Seniors do not care. Often times seniors and freshmen overlap in elective classes and in my own personal opinion I seem to find that freshmen think seniors are interested in anything you have to say. The thing is that they do not. Do not take it personally, but seniors are less than a year removed from never seeing anyone in this building ever again.

You however have been sentenced to three more years of condemnation on Schneider street. Get good grades, make some new friends and do not be too offended by upperclassmen.

Sophomore: Congrats. You have successfully navigated your freshman year and you are no longer the youngest people at the school.

Unfortunately, your second year of high school is the worst year of your life. If you are an honors kid good luck with AP U.S. history, honors chemistry, and honors biology. For a certain self loathing few, it is all three.

It does not stop with classes though. For most, sophomore year is the year you learn to drive, which entails driver’s ed, in-cars, and a license test. Needless to say this is not the year of free time, but hey it is not all bad. You can drive yourself and your buddies to Taco Bell at 11:30 p.m. just because you’re sophomores and that is what you do.

This year has it is enjoyable parts and can most certainly be fun, but if you care about your academic performance your second year of high school is going to be a pivotal nose to the grindstone 180 days. Last little piece of advice; there is nothing more annoying on this planet than hearing sophomores make fun of freshmen for being freshmen.

Just stop. That was you less than a year ago. At least wait until you are a junior to look down upon freshmen then you can do it all you want.

Junior: This is the stage of your high school career most comparable to the limbo stage in Inception. You are split between an early onset case of senioritis and a whole two years left in your high school education.

You are probably taking the majority of the AP classes you will ever take in your life plus classes like Physics and Precalc. Bummer. Not to mention the majority of people’s first taste of the one test that will determine your whole life (well, pretty much) the much dreaded ACT.

Also unless you go ahead and get a 36 right out of the gate (you won’t) the odds say that you are going to pay for, study for, and go to multiple test dates. Without hard core help, your score probably won’t climb as high as you would like.

The ACT may just be the worst part of junior year. There are pros for the cons though as well. You get to go to Prom Ladies, and guys you get to pay for Prom (wooo!). In all honesty it is not that bad, just tell your date not to order the steak and you could probably swing all your Prom expenses under $200.

But that is a different article itself. The great thing about junior year is that at this point you pretty much know everyone and know who your friends are, which may not sound like a big deal but it is really good to know.

Senior: I can not tell whether senior year goes or if it really sucks. You can leave the school when you do not have to be in class thanks to a wonderful thing called senior option, but you still have to be at school when you have classes, most of which you most likely do not care about.

On the bright side though 90 percent of your college resume is completed. However, you still have to apply to college which includes but is not limited to getting letters of recommendation, writing entrance essays, sending transcripts, applying for scholarships, dealing with FAFSA etc.

The fact is the sooner you get into the colleges you want to pick from and the sooner you pick a college ( or don’t, college isn’t everyone’s best option) the easier your senior year will be. The worst part though is the bittersweetness to every memory you make senior year.

Not only will you experience your last sports event for your favorite sport, take your last class with your favorite teacher, or eat your last Bosco stick, but it is more than likely that there are some of your classmates that you will never see again. Weird to think even people you did not know very well will miss you and you will miss them but hey, you are done with high school.

[Updated Aug. 10, 2017: This article has been reformatted for consistency.]