By Vy Nguyen and Amrita Jhooty
In a last-minute effort to have an article written for this week’s edition of the Dig, Vy and I decided to address our feelings on sophomore year. Let me tell you, we are not having a good time.
So why has this year been especially hard for me? After breaking it down, the answer seems to be that sophomore year lacks the appeal of other grades. Freshmen year, being a radical shift from middle school, is what I like to refer as “the adjustment year.” Students are both anxious and enthused at the prospect of high school, and teachers slowly increase the workload as the year progresses. On the other hand, there is the not-so-appealing junior year. Classes are challenging, assessments are frequent, and students begin the arduous journey of the college admission process. However, there is still some reassurance in knowing that everyone else is as screwed as you are. By the time senior year rolls around, college admissions slowly wind to an end and the much deserved sense of seniority kicks in. But what about sophomore year? Sophomore year is simply sophomore year. Students have adjusted to high school life and there is no comfort in knowing that we have the majority of high school left to finish. It is just another average year of high school, deprived of the excitement, reassurance, and relief other grades have to offer.
After being described as “the worst three weeks ever” and “horrible,” it’s safe to say that this year hasn’t been going smoothly for at least a few people. After talking to other sophomores, it seems that many students are struggling with the increased level of homework and frequency of tests. For me, the root of my problems date back to about four months ago, when I chose my classes for this year. Despite my advisor’s advice to only take five academic classes first semester, I decided that it would be best for my non-existent four-year plan to take six. Now here I am, overwhelmed by the sheer amount of assignments I have each night and regretting not listening to my advisor. So here is some advice coming from someone who really screwed up: make sure to plan ahead and have a balanced schedule each semester. And for those of you in my position, just know that we are only three weeks into this school year, and everything gets better with time.
Sophomore year? More like “sadphomore” year. Or “suffermore year.” Or even “sophnomore” year. I have heard from upperclassmen so many times about how school will get more challenging after freshman year, but I never expect the statement to be this real. It is currently the third week of school, and I am already seriously behind in my SRP deadlines and have just failed a test. Compared to the third week of my freshman year, when I watched vines that I can show my grandparents (on loop) and drafted a Gilgamesh fanfiction during the two hours of dorm proctored study hall, my academic life is one of the best glo-downs of the century. Life was so chill and relaxing.
The thing is, I know I am doing the best I can. I am studying full-time in and out of study hall and have not watched my favorite shows in three weeks. Compared to a lot of my peers who are taking more rigorous classes and pursuing more out-of-school commitments, what I am going through feels like an almond trying to raise its voice. But I start watching ASMR soap video (sometimes even slime videos, which is not acceptable) to stay calm and my calendar is filling up everyday. It isn’t that I am not good at time-management: Aardvark 101 taught me about how not to lose my head because of school more than any inspiring quotes and chicken-soup stories can. There are a lot more assignments than my expectations and it is hard to balance so many things on one plate. In this case, I guess life is not necessarily anyone’s fault and I have to keep moving on.
The first few weeks of school are difficult for everyone and all we can do is try. Things do not get better but eventually we will be used to the cycle of school. But who knows? There may be a junior year edition of this.