West Seneca East and West graduates reflect on what they learned in high school

The Class of 2018 recently graduated from high school, a huge milestone in their lives.

By Natalie Maloy

The Class of 2018 recently graduated from high school, a huge milestone in their lives. As the students part ways, many are acknowledging the experiences they will take with them as they move onto their next chapter in life.

Hannah Wrobleuski, who recently graduated from West Seneca West Senior High School, chose the Taylor Swift quote, “It was the end of a decade, but the start of an age” as her senior quote, giving a bitter but sweet end to her high school experience. She wanted to share what she learned from her time at West and give advice to incoming freshmen.

“One of the biggest things I learned was if you set attainable goals, such as making high honor roll, if you work hard enough you will reach them. So I will definitely take that away and work hard in college,” explained Wrobleuski, who is planning on becoming a social studies teacher after college. She explained that Mrs. Sullivan, a social studies teacher at West, inspired her to make her final decision and she aspires to be just like her some day.

“An important thing I am going to remember as I leave high school and approach the real world is we grow as people every single day,” Wrobleuski said. “We are never the same person as we were yesterday because we are constantly learning and improving to be our best selves. I learned that it is OK to be straightforward with people because that is the only way to avoid conflict. I will take this with me as I continue through life and in improving my communications skills.”

A new year offers a fresh start. As the Class of 2023 approaches high school, Wrobleuski wanted to give advice to help freshmen get off on the right foot and have the right perspective before entering into high school. 

“The most important piece of advice I would give to incoming freshmen is cheesy, because everyone says it, but get involved! It is how you make good friends and discover your interests. Don’t be the kid who goes home every day after school. West has so many clubs and opportunities to offer even if you aren’t into sports. For example, signing up for the fresh start mentor program when you are a sophomore,” said Wrobleuski.

Through the Fresh Start mentor program, juniors and seniors meet with freshmen once a month to discuss helpful tips on life and getting around high school. “This program helped me work on my communication skills even more, as well as my leadership skills,” said Wrobleuski. 

Devyn Chudzik, who recently graduated from West Seneca East Senior High School, used the “Coco” quote, “When life gets me down, I play my guitar” as her senior quote. She explained, “In high school things that matter at the time won’t matter in five weeks.” Her quote was to show how she handled high school and the stress it brings. 

“Chorus throughout my four years showed me I really love music and it inspired me to go to college for music,” she explained. Not only did music help her throughout her four years, her supportive teachers did as well. She explained there were multiple teachers who helped inspire and guide her. 

“My English teacher Mrs. Lysiak and my Spanish teacher Mrs. Hacker were my ‘teacher moms’ and they were always there for me during my dark days asking if I’m OK,” said Chudzik. She explained her experience with the teachers taught her there is always a door open, but it is her decision whether or not to walk through it. “Being able to compromise my personal life with music and school work has made me college ready.”

When it comes to offering advice to incoming freshmen, Chudzik said, “People could be mean sometimes when they are jealous, but if you show everyone compassion they will become nicer. Also, don’t be rude to any students or teachers. Be nice to everyone no matter what! I promise you high school goes by quickly and the time will fly by.”

Farewell Class of 2018, and remember the Dr. Seuss quote, “Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”

Natalie Maloy is a community relations intern in the West Seneca Central School District.

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