Mykah Kennedy, News Editor

Due to length restrictions and overall lack of motivation, I have decided to include what I view as the top 5 things you need to know and remind yourself of throughout high school.

1. Get involved. I know you will hear this over and over throughout your high school career, but it’s truly something that’s necessary. You will go crazy if you don’t find an activity to do besides studying.

One of my biggest regrets in high school is not getting involved sooner. During my junior year, I got involved with the drama department by trying out for the fall play. It was one of the scariest things I’ve ever done and it changed my life. I now have a home away from home and another family. They genuinely are my best friends, and I don’t know what I’m going to do without seeing them every day next year.

2. You will change, and that’s okay. Your interests won’t necessarily always be the same. The more things you try, the more things you have to love.

During freshman year, I desperately wanted to be on the volleyball team. After crying for hours from being put on the practice team, I decided that volleyball wasn’t really that big of a deal in my life. After deciding that high school sports weren’t for me, I kind of just floated through school for a while. I didn’t know what to do with myself. During my sophomore year, I became friends with a completely different group of people. Because of that, I was lead into iBowling, Speech Club, and Drama Club. I never pictured myself doing any of those things, but I’m so glad that I did because they were some of the best experiences of my life.

3. Don’t change yourself for anyone except yourself. No guy or girl is ever worth pretending to be someone you’re not. If they don’t like you for you, then it isn’t meant to be.

This doesn’t only go for you significant other. This applies to friends, too. If your friends start bringing you down, they aren’t your friends. During school, you’ll make friends and lose friends. That’s okay. As my interests changed, so did my best friend’s. You will grow apart from your old friends, but you will make new ones with the same interests as you. The end of one friendship is the beginning of another.

4. Be kind. Honestly, this is something that has gotten me so far at Ames High. Be kind to everyone, and it will definitely pay off in the end.

Being kind got me so many friends and so much from my teachers. A little respect goes a long way, especially with adults. Being kind to others leads to others being kind to you, which is always nice. Teachers are your biggest allies besides your parents, so be sure that you give them the respect that they deserve. You never know what people are going through, so try your best to be kind every day.

5. Have a sense of humor. Being able to laugh at yourself and along with others will take you really far.

When I was in middle school, I was bullied a lot. I feel like that really taught me how to laugh with someone and not at them. There’s a lot of embarrassing things that will happen throughout the course of your high school career. Tripping up the stairs is pretty much a weekly occurrence for me. Being embarrassed because of it is just a waste of time. Shrug it off, because the person next to you probably did the same thing yesterday.

I’d like to thank my parents, my grandparents, the drama department, and my teachers for being there for me throughout my high school career. You guys made sure that I felt loved every single day, and I could never thank you enough for that. Stay swaggy, Ames High.