The voice of the student.

Ray’s Reflection: Isabella Portu

I’ve attended MIA for all four years of high school. Each year, from my first day as a freshman all the way until my senior year, has included a new and complex learning experience. High school taught me about independence, confidence, self-sufficiency, relationships, boundaries, and many more assets that I hope to carry with me throughout my future. 

Initially, I struggled with maintaining complete control of my classes, as I had never been solely responsible for my academic requirements. While switching from eight classes to four should’ve decreased my workload significantly, much more information was being covered at one time, and I often found myself falling behind. A solution I found for both of these struggles was keeping an active day-to-day agenda, with due dates and specific time slots for me to work on assignments, tests, and other activities.

 Another thing I struggled with throughout high school was burnout. Towards the middle and end of the semester, once assignments had begun to stack up and deadlines were approaching, I often felt helpless in my ability to complete tasks. Once they were finished, I felt no real accomplishment for doing so. To prevent this, along with my daily agenda, I would write out the assignments I intended to complete for the day on a separate sheet of paper or sticky note. That way, I would be able to cross out each task as I finished, and by the end of the day throw out the completed sheet. This felt much more conclusive and provided me with a feeling of accomplishment.

While I wouldn’t change any of my experiences, there are different ways I would approach each task and aspect of my life. As mentioned before, I had little to no organizational skills going into high school and often fell behind. I also had to learn the hard way that despite being surrounded by my friends, class time is the best time to get all of your work done, as you’re already going to have to spend the time there, you might as well not end up spending even more time after school continuing to work if it is not necessary.

Some takeaways from high school are that despite what others may think of you or make you out to be, you decide the kind of person you become. I learned not to allow myself to fall into the categories others put me in, but instead make the decision to become the person I wanted to be. And in reality, I’m the only person who knows who I truly am, so other’s opinions on the matter hold no actual validity.

I am scared to become solely dependent on myself for everything eventually, and moving away from my family sometimes frightens me. However, I will be able to survive on my own and will likely grow from independence. I’m excited about my future because I can finally control what is coming next for me.

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