I interviewed freshmen Emma Hug, Gabe Zamora, Angel Ortega, and seniors Morgan Roberts, Bryan Ralphs, and Nick Vance to get their different perspectives on getting back to school this year.
Ellie Knobel: What were you the most nervous about starting this school year?
Emma Hug: I was really nervous about finding my classes.
Gabe Zamora: Probably bullying. I didn’t know if it was really a thing in high school, because I’ve never seen it… only heard about it.
Angel Ortega: This school is so big, I was really nervous about finding my way around. I’m still getting used to it.
Morgan Roberts: I’m the most nervous about how quickly this school year is going to go. Everything will be changing so soon.
Bryan Ralphs: Starting the school year, I was most nervous about having Ms. Dercher and writing the senior essay. I’ve heard from past students that this essay is really difficult, but was relieved when I found out that SMSD has taken it off the curriculum.
Nick Vance: I was sorta nervous to meet my new teachers, and I knew some of my classes were going to be difficult. Also playing varsity football makes me nervous. There’s a lot of pressure, and a lot more people watching you play.
E.K.: What are you looking forward to the most this year?
E.H.: I’m excited to meet new people.
G.Z.: I’m just looking forward to getting the high school experience. I’m ready to move on from Westridge.
A.O.: Sports. I’m gonna try out for golf. There are barely any sports at Westridge.
M.R.: I’m really looking forward to graduation.
B.R.: This year I am looking forward to leading club 121 and participating in environmental club.
N.V.: Leading the student section, Friday night football games, graduating, and just making the most of my senior year. I know i won’t see a lot of my classmates after this year.
E.K.: What is your easiest class? Your hardest class?
E.H.: My easiest class is Art. I guess Honors Geometry is my hardest class. It’s not that difficult, there’s just a lot of homework.
G.Z.: Algebra is my easiest and favorite class. I really like math. My hardest class is probably English.
A.O.: Biology is pretty simple for me. Science is my strong point. NJROTC is my most difficult class, there’s ton to memorize. It’s a pretty competitive class too.
M.R.: Government is my easiest class this year. College Algebra Trig is my most difficult so far.
B.R.: My easiest class is Intro to Computer Programming because the code is prewritten. Dercher will be my hardest teacher and probably my hardest class because writing is a weakness of mine. Although, I know taking this class will help prepare me for college.
N.V.: Advanced Video Productions is my easiest class. Chemistry 2 is my most difficult class. There’s a lot of homework involved.
E.K.: How do you feel about the security updates to the school?
E.H.: I guess they’re good… I don’t think about them that much.
G.Z.: I think they’re definitely necessary. There are some messed up people in the world. More security is needed.
A.O.: The updates were necessary to the school. I’m happy to have them.
M.R.: I’m not really used to it. It seems kind of weird and unnecessary.
B.R.: I think having the security is for the best, but there are some drawbacks to it that us students and teachers will have to get used to. Some issues that students will come by are classes that require going outside, being punctual to school, and remembering to carry your I.D. at all times.
N.V.: I think making the school more secure is a good idea, but I don’t like the fact that I can’t go out to my car whenever I need to. I also think it’s a hassle when you don’t make it to school on time and have to walk all the way to the front entrance. That will be especially annoying during the winter.
E.K.: What has been your biggest challenge so far in this school year?
E.H.: Adjusting from middle school to high school… I have to wake up so early now!
G.Z.: Learning the building has been difficult. I’m still learning really. The fact that there’s two separate upstairs hallways always confuses me.
A.O.: Finding my way around. It was so overwhelming the first week of school.
M.R.: I can’t think of any big challenges I’ve come across this year.
B.R.: Waking up on time.
N.V.: Getting used to school again is always a challenge. Adjusting to the work load is such a change from this summer.