Claire Dickerson, 12
If you’re a senior, you may be lucky enough to know where you’re going to spend the next four years of your life. You’ve spent the early winter filling out numerous college applications, time that you’ll never get back, but that was well spent. The wait is almost over, and by now you’re probably well familiar with the anxiety of waiting for your top college’s decisions to be released. If you’ve already received an acceptance letter, congratulations, you can breathe a sigh of relief! And if you haven’t heard anything yet, try to relax because at this point there’s nothing you can do but wait a little longer.
If in fact you are planning to attend a university next fall, there are some important matters you need to take care of. First, you’ll need to make your final decision on what college is best for you. Choose carefully, as this will most likely become your home for the next four years. While making this choice, go visit the school (if you haven’t already) and talk to current students, other accepted students, and admissions counselors to learn as much as you can. After you’re sure of your decision, you will most likely have to accept your offer and pay a deposit, securing your spot for next fall.
Once you’ve secured your spot at a school that’s right for you, sit back, relax, and enjoy the rest of your senior year. Several exciting activities that most, if not all, seniors participate in are prom, beach week, graduation, and graduation parties. Take advantage of your exam exemptions and try not to exceed your absence limit.
While you’re relaxing and enjoying the end of senior year, keep in mind how expensive college is. While some are lucky enough to have parents who can help them pay tuition, most of us will carry the entire weight of their college financials. A good way to prepare and get ahead is by having a summer job. Making some extra cash before you begin life as a college student will take a fraction of the weight off your shoulders. Current college students already know this, so they will be the first ones to snatch up most of the jobs as soon as they’re home. The sooner you find a way to make money the better. Another way to take ease the financial situation is by applying for scholarships. There are many scholarship opportunities offered by numerous groups and organizations. Some only receive a few applicants, so your chances of winning are higher than you think.
The summer after we graduate will be the shortest summer we get, only ten weeks to be exact. Travel, make some money, and use your freedom wisely to make the most out of those ten weeks. While you’re out there living it up, remember that these are some of the best days of your life, so don’t take them for granted. During this time, look for a roommate, if you don’t already have one. Plan and shop for your dorm room, make sure you have a good backpack, clothes for college, and a laptop if you need one. After that, embrace the transition because the next chapter of your life is about to begin.
By. Lauren Schubert
Every year, the current senior class of the Leadership and International Relations program here at James River completes a capstone. Capstones are student-run projects that are meant to bring attention to a specific cause or charity. The most recent capstone event took place on February 2nd and centered around the issue of homelessness in the greater Richmond area. The informational conference was held by leadership students Elon Harrison and Taylor Gibson and had an overwhelming amount of support from Richmond residents and our very own James River Rapids! The Rapid Press was able to ask one of the managers of the one of the managers of the event, Elon Harrison, a few questions about how the entire event came together which can be found below.
Lauren Schubert: How did the two of you come up with the idea for a homelessness conference?
Elon Harrison: Taylor and I have always had a heart for homeless individuals and always think about how fortunate we’ve been in our lives. We understand that homelessness is not a quick fix, but we wanted people to be aware of its prevalence in the RVA community. Giving a few dollars to a homeless individual on the street is not the ultimate solution to the problem, so we wanted to provide our community with a platform to help alleviate the issue (volunteering, donating, spreading the word, etc). By hosting an informational conference, we were able to educate the community on the prevalence of homelessness in RVA, give perspectives on the issue through individuals who have experienced it themselves, and provide organizations with which they would involve themselves. Ultimately, we hoped the conference would encourage people to take action on the issue.
Lauren Schubert: How did you feel about the overall turnout of the event? Did it undermine or exceed your expectations?
Elon Harrison: We had an amazing turnout and had more individuals in attendance than we’d expected.
Lauren Schubert: Overall, what was the best part of hosting and planning the event?
Elon Harrison: Honestly, the best part of planning and hosting was knowing we were going to make an impact on our community once the event came together. The actual process of planning and hosting was quite stressful. We had some issues along the way, but we knew our work would be beneficial in some way… that’s what kept us going throughout the process.