By Alex Cichowicz ´23

Well that’s about it. All four years are just about completed. High school took a lot out of me but also gave so much back. Not only does high school give back an education, but also mainly experiences and memories. When people think of high school, the first thought is sitting in a classroom, learning page by page of a textbook.

It is more than that.

The typical high school experience is going to the football games and dances while still keeping up with your academics in the classroom. Mine was a little bit different than that. While I still participated in watching the football games, I was involved with the band. It got me into almost every football game we held, and I was also able to play music with a bunch of my friends, which in time became my family.

Being a part of the band consisted of taking part in many parades in the Chicagoland area, going on a trip to Disney World, and driving 3 hours to see the top bands across America.

Throughout high school, you are going to get knocked down, but that is all part of the process. You must get knocked down throughout life only to get back up. Not only in high school, but also moments throughout life, you have to learn to put your head down and power through it. High school teaches you these life lessons and slowly brings you into the real world.

When something or someone breaks you down, whether it be a specific person, a group of people, a grade in a class, or even not achieving something in a sport, it should give you more of a reason to get back up and try again. When you fall, you can not just sit there and accept that there’s no way to bounce back from the downfall. Failure happens for a reason, just like everything else in life, but it shows you what you are doing wrong and how to fix it.

In my senior year, I have had some failures and a multitude of trials and errors. With all that, I learned to not let the world around me break me down. You can only be affected by what you choose to affect you, along with the actions in response to what others say and do.

I have also learned that each and every one of us have so much potential in life; all we have to do is follow the right path and reach out to our resources. Throughout high school and especially senior year, current and former teachers want to help and watch you succeed. My boss was also a major help pointing me in the right direction literally and figuratively.

One last thing I would like to say before I go is, the best you can do is try. Never stop and if you think that’s all you have, there’s always that 1% more left to give.