I was never the person who returned to my high school regularly after graduating. I returned at the end of the summer I graduated, before leaving for college, to pass along some study aids I was getting rid of to teachers. Then I left for college and never really looked back. However, a family friend recently began teaching English at my high school and asked me to speak to his English class about what it was like being an English major in college and how I got into law school. The college counselor heard I was coming, and asked me to come on the high school’s career day. I immediately accepted.
When I first got to campus, high school felt like so long ago. Not to mention the students looked so much younger than I ever remember looking (but most certainly did). It was odd, standing in front of a room full of students and trying to summarize my life in the last six years. Still, it was fun to think about and speak to the ways in which my high school experience informed my college experience and how my college experience informed my law school experience (thus far). Following my speaking at career day, I also took part in an alumni interview for my high school’s recently established newspaper. When people ask me how I got to where I am, I have a pretty set answer, but what the answer doesn’t reflect is that I pretty much winged it for the most part. I naturally like being involved, so I got involved. I’ve always wanted to go to a good school, so I set the bar really high in high school and worked toward achieving that goal. Then in college, I set the bar for law school high and worked hard.
The difference between my high school experience and college experience, however, is that I chose activities that spoke to me as a person. That probably sounds cheesy, and maybe it is, but I stopped doing everything and what I thought would “look good.” Instead, I got involved in things that I thoroughly enjoyed. I learned to say “no” and be more strategic with my time and where I invested it. In sum, everything in my life has worked well and even in the hard moments, the moments that made me question myself, I came out the other side stronger and more in touch with where I wanted to be and who I wanted to become. I’m still figuring out a lot, but as I look back, and as I answered questions from current high school students, I couldn’t help but feel that, thus far, my life is going well and I’m proud of my accomplishments.