How to Survive Switchin’ Schools as a Senior


Ben Wiche, Staff Writer

You will never know for sure. I didn’t know until 10 p.m. the night before school started. That was when my parents said their meeting they had with the principal didn’t go according to plan, that he thought the offense was flagrant enough, that because it was a private school and still (technically) summer break the school the rules were different, a bit more lax in the specifics of disciplinary retributions. That was the day before my senior year at Nolan Catholic High School started, and that was when I learned I would not be going back.

I was out of one school and into another. I would need to switch from a small, private school to a large, bustling, public one. I would need to construct an entire new set of friends in one third the time it took at my last school while still keeping in touch with my old ones, and while still keeping up my grades and keeping up with college admissions and working a job at Target. Now here I am, five weeks after all of this went down and I can safely say things are… alright.

The switch went off without a hitch.

How’d I manage that?

Looking back, what surprises me the most is how much of my routine stayed the same. I drive to school, run cross country in the morning, shower, take classes, leave at 3:00 p.m. I’m taking most of the same classes that I would’ve at Nolan, only switching out World Religions with Journalism, and some random electives with Creative Writing. Same schedule, different school.

Of course many things have changed. I get up at 6:30 rather than 4:45 due to the smaller commute coupled with my first period being athletics. The school is much bigger, but that doesn’t really change my life that much. Also, I’ve found a nice group of friends (shoutout to Samuel VJ and Sri!) while still hanging out and talking to my old friends (shoutout to my Twitter feed!).  I no longer have to wear a uniform and classes are generally bigger. I have to plan my outfits and fight for attention, but it’s no big deal.

That’s about it. Of course, running cross country has been a great place to meet people, and going to football games and the HoCo parade have been great ways to familiarize myself with the community. But is joining clubs and going to events the only way to survive a switch?

The only other senior transfer I know at Keller is Will Jarzenbeck, a pretty chill guy who I never really talked to at Nolan, but seems to be doing fairly well at Keller. He joined Clay Target Shooting Club, works as an office aide, and is mostly keeping things chill. When I caught up with him recently, things didn’t seem to be bogging him down either. He was calm, pretty chill, just dealing with this new change in his life.

So I guess anyone can switch schools, even as a senior, and things will be mostly the same. Sure, both Will and I have joined some clubs, pursued sports, caught up with the social scene. But even if we didn’t do that, senior year is still senior year. Not exactly an Iron Man.

So even if you start at a new school senior year you can still have a productive, engaging and exciting senior year…

Or just coast with a case of Senioritis. I won’t judge.