By: Jake Anderson, Claire Swartzlander, Alex Thornton, Isabella Doumitt
As a freshman last year I was surrounded by what is commonly known as senioritis. In an article by glhsreflection.org they defined senioritis as, “A disease where seniors find it extremely hard to motivate themselves to do work towards the end of the year. The disease is present at the beginning of the year, and the severity increases as the year progresses.” We all see this happen year after year with each new wave of seniors that come in whether you are a parent, faculty member, teacher, or any kind of bystander but in actuality, should it be tolerated?
Last year, I watched my sister go from doing insane amounts of homework for her five AP classes every night junior year, to somehow watching Gilmore Girls and Grey’s Anatomy for her 5 AP classes every night senior year. I also watched the whole newspaper club, almost entirely made of seniors, slowly collapse from a club of aspiring journalists to a club completely consumed by senioritis. But as a freshman last year and a sophomore this year I’m skeptical. Is senioritis just a word used to promote laziness as a senior or is it real. I mean sure we all procrastinate sometimes and not everyone is a rigorous scholar 24/7 but senioritis is on a different level. I took to science and actual seniors this year to see if the early stages of senioritis are already kicking in here at Maranatha.
According to a study by Vanderbilt University, high levels of dopamine in many regions of the brain are associated with a high work ethic. The study showed that hardworking people have high levels of dopamine in the two parts of the brain most known for their role in reward and motivation, and low dopamine levels in the anterior insula, which is linked to motivation and risk perception. This tells me that seniors recognize that their is low risk because they just need to survive their senior year. It also tells me that seniors are carefully weighing their options and valuing Netflix over netclassroom.
However, to really grasp this concept I felt the need to give seniors Alex Thornton, Claire Swartzlander, and Isabella Dougmitt in our Journalism and New Media class the opportunity to talk about their personal experiences thus far concerning this disease and the consequences that come with it.
Alex Thornton: Once upon a time back to my freshman year I was a 14 year old who wanted to be in college already. As a freshman I had cousins that were upperclassman, so they let me hangout with them. Hanging out with them caused me to want to go to college already, but sadly I had three years left. As high school slowly continued I began to realize I’ve had senioritis since my freshman year. Every day I woke up thinking to myself, “I can’t wait to come back home and watch Netflix.” Me thinking that only made it worse, but I couldn’t help myself. Now I’m a senior in high school starting college apps and college essays not wanting to apply to college because I’m scared of leaving all of my friends. So a word of advice to all my freshman, sophomores, and juniors, enjoy high school while it lasts because senioritis will never go away it’s just something you’re going to have to push through.
Isabella Doumitt: Being a Senior in high school means balancing your school work and college applications at the same time. First semester is a critical time for the application process as well as an important time to maintain your gpa. At this point the stress of determining your future really starts to set in and finding motivation to do homework is extremely difficult.
As a senior, I have found “senioritis” to especially affect me now that we are applying to colleges. Doing busy work from my classes feels unnecessary since I think my whole focus should be on applications. This becomes even more difficult when seniors try to pile on extracurricular activities to improve their résumés. Senioritis hits the first few months of school very harshly and finding motivation becomes obsolete.
Claire Swartzlander: (Her senioritis was so strong she couldn’t write an article on senioritis *mind blown*)