Senioritis strikes America

Coming back from Spring Break signals a change in the atmosphere of high schools all across America. As the days get warmer and brighter, the encapsulating walls of school are no longer able to hold their respective students within.

According to research done by the student newspaper of Northwood High School which is comparative in size to Westerville South and located in Northwood, North Carolina, 78 percent of polled Northwood Senior students felt they had what is commonly known as Senioritis. One Northwood senior, Anthony Harr said, “I didn’t really notice it; it just kind of happened.”

According to senior Kingsley Nimoh, “I have felt the effects of senioritis. It’s when you are doing homework at 1 a.m. in the morning, and you’re still not done, but you just give up,” Nimoh said.

To understand senioritis, however you have to know what it means. Urban Dictionary, a satirical online dictionary for popular culture phrases and their usage, defines senioritis as, “A crippling disease that strikes high school seniors. Symptoms include: laziness, an over-excessive wearing of track pants… and sweatshirts. Also features a lack of studying, repeated absences, and a generally dismissive attitude. The only known cure is a phenomenon known as graduation.”

Ask a number of seniors and they will give you back a similar number of different answers. Yet, there are some common themes most can agree on.

South senior Lilah Benjamin said, “I think it’s the idea that our final grades are based on the year grade and not your quarter grade. Knowing that makes me feel like keeping my grades up for fourth quarter does not matter as much as it should. I am also excited to move on for a new beginning.”

These issues are compounded by events such as National acceptance Day, on May 1 when Seniors officially decide on which college they will attend the next fall.

While many see that May 1 deadline as the hard black border to once and for all give up on work, there is still class time, and many tests left to take.

According to the website of Dr. Kat Cohen, CEO and founder of Ivywise, a New York-based college consulting firm, on a page discussing college acceptances, “…college acceptance isn’t the ticket to check out of your last few weeks of high school, Although it’s rare, there have been incidences of colleges rescinding acceptances from students who received very low grades at the end of the year.”

South counselor, Laura Elliott said, “It is rare we have to deal with extremes of students facing problems due to lowering grades. However it is more common for students to face issues if they go from having a fully loaded AP/IB schedule to the bare minimum in classes.”

Scholarships can also be another issue, as many require a certain grade point average to keep. Elliott, who also spoke on scholarships, said, “They can be an issue if you let grades slack at the end of the year, problems with that are far more common than problems with admissions.”

There’s a good chance many of the seniors here at Westerville South have caught the Senioritis bug. As Senior Gage Tope said, “Oh yeah, senioritis is definitely here now, if you haven’t had it since Freshman year.”

For those who wish to combat senioritis, however, there are ways to combat this epidemic. Tope also noted, “Turning in homework, even late, is a good target. You might as well get some points rather than none. And don’t forget those Ap/Ib tests, they are going to be here before we know it.”  

Another way to combat senioritis is by breaking down work into smaller, more manageable pieces. Elliott explained, “If you look at your grades and focus on one class and you can channel your effort into that class to help that specific grade. Or, you can look on the weekends at what can you do ahead of time to also help avoid stress.”

While senioritis can be tough, you can ensure you have a smooth transition out of high school without the common long term side effects of the national epidemic known as Senioritis simply by continuing to put in work and finishing out your Wildcat career strong.