The Finish Line


“Graduation” by Sean MacEntee (licensed under CC BY 2.0)

Well, ladies and gentlemen, my time is almost up here at Huntingtown High School. It was a good run. You know, there were obviously some ups and downs, but we made it, didn’t we? I came into this school as a 13-year-old freshman and now about to graduate as a 17-year-old senior. Time really does fly when you’re having fun. Fun wasn’t the only way to describe my high school voyage, however. I was also scared and clueless and excited for what was always next to come. Mainly, though, I leave this four-year journey with happiness and appreciation for life. High school was terrifying but thrilling, challenging but engaging, slow but enticing, all at the same time. I wanted to leave you all with what my experience was like throughout these four years and how it changed my life.

Freshman Year

September 3rd, 2019. Entering a big school as a 13-year-old. I walked in as one of the little kids and now, three and a half years later, here we are. Freshman year was… a journey, to say the least. We enter in football season. Football season was enduring, but it had its fun moments. Getting benched was obviously not a fun moment, but football taught me some things. It taught me not to make mistakes in important moments. Mistakes happen but crucial ones can cost a lot. Football also taught me how to have patience. It was a rough time during freshman year, and I didn’t know if things in high school were going to get better at all, but little did I know, I just had to wait. During freshman year, however, I tended to give up on a lot of things. I gave up on school for a little, I gave up on basketball, I gave up on a lot of things. I learned not to give up ever since then. Things got hard but I pushed through. School started getting harder, which, at the time, I hadn’t been used to. I felt like trash, and everything just started pouring down on me once 2020 struck. Tragedies were happening in just the first couple months of 2020. This is when COVID became prevalent and the talk of school shutting down really came to fruition. Everyone was so happy during this time and when schools eventually shut down, it only sparked their joy even more. Online school for the last three months of that school year was possibly the easiest thing that students could have experienced. There goes freshman year. A quick but grueling experience for 13- and 14-year-old Trent Newman.

Sophomore Year

Well, this was an experience for sure. I’m not sure that I paid attention for one full class this entire year. Can you even blame me, though? I don’t think anybody really paid that much attention, and for those who did, I applaud you, because God knows I couldn’t. I became lazy and definitely lost some of my knowledge. I set myself up for failure upon returning to school for Junior Year. Those who actually paid attention, however, were set up for success. I would not say I regret not paying attention in Sophomore Year as much as I regret letting myself feel terrible for myself often. This year was the most important of my life up to this point, as it taught me to not care what people think. Not only did it teach me that, but it made me gain confidence, it made me not feel sorry for myself, it made me who I am now. Obviously, everyone can make improvements, and I still can make a lot, but the jump in self-improvement was immense. On the outside, some improvements were made, but most importantly, the improvements were made on the inside, as I described earlier. Self-growth is one of the most important things that someone can go through, and I’m glad that mine has already happened, because I needed it badly.

Junior Year

Entering junior year, I was still a little nervous that it was going to be as rough as freshman year. I was completely wrong. Junior year ended up starting the best one-year stretch of my life. From February of 2022 to February of this year, I had the most joy that I had felt in a long time. I became more determined to do things that benefit me, I found friends that truly care about me, I learned how to have fun, my life finally broke the monotony, and I got my first job. Having people who care about you may be all you need to break you out of a slump in life. I was lucky enough to not only find people who care about me, but I was able to motivate myself. My grades began to improve, my social skills increased, and I became an overall smarter person. As I previously stated, sophomore year was the most important year of my life, but it was the main reason why I was able to enjoy my junior year. Without the struggle of my sophomore year, there is no fun junior or senior year.

Senior Year

We are finally here, and it is all so surreal. Sometimes, I look back and think about freshman year and how rough a start high school got off to. Now, in a much happier state, I can just look back and smile. These four years have been a journey, and as the stress of colleges and AP exams way down on me, I continue to fight my way through it. I don’t have much to say on senior year, other than it’s been a battle. But I’ve been fighting back just as aggressively. Every time senior year takes a hit at me, I respond, and that’s the goal in life as well. Whatever life may bring to me, I will respond as best as I can. That is something that these four truly confusing years at HHS have taught me. Wrapping up my time here at this school is exciting but a little strange as well. Life will be so much different after high school, but I’m ready to embrace the challenge. This school has meant so much to my life in many ways. So, as I put the finishing touches on my final high school article, I would like everyone to remember that whatever life throws at you, you must always be ready with a response. These four years have changed me so much, and now it’s time to say goodbye. Farewell, Huntingtown High School.