Approaching Our Senior Year and Beyond
Jazmyne Faith Viloria | Maui High School, Class of 2023
Scholarships, college applications, personal statement essays and “What’s your safety, target and reach schools?” started intertwining in my brain as I watched Maui High’s Class of 2022 commencement ceremony. I knew the post-high school life was inevitable but I didn’t realize it was arriving soon. With senior year approaching me and my peers started to fill our summers with internships, senior year planning, college searches, scholarship writing and travel.
“Over the summer, I will be doing an internship with the STEMworks team working with Chad Junkermeier at UHMC to help with his project on carbophenes which I look forward to being a part of to help his team and gain some experience and knowledge in material science,” Alessandra Gudoy excitedly announces. Along with Alessandra are many other seniors who decided to participate in a summer internship; most stayed within the Maui community; others, however, ventured out of state. For example, my internship with PBS Student Reporting Labs will be held in Tempe, Arizona, allowing me to experience an entirely different setting while applying my creative media and marketing skills to new tasks. Internships offer high schoolers opportunities to gain experience in their desired career field, connect their skills and classroom lessons to a work environment and expand their network.
Summer also allows seniors to obtain their senior project hours through job shadowing, volunteering or creating project elements. Alyssa Palomar plans to job shadow a pediatrician to correlate with her senior project’s focus on the medical field: “I’m looking forward to gaining new knowledge about the medical field, working with patients and experiencing a new work environment,” Alyssa explains. Although some seniors spend their summer completing hours, others use it to plan, research and connect with possible mentors. “I am also working as a part-time unit helper at Hale Makua and with that, I am working alongside them to plan my senior project! I am hoping to bring back bingo nights with the HOSABERS at Hale Makua,” Cheyenne Cadiz retorted.
Besides experiencing new work environments, some seniors travel across the nation to experience new cultures and scenery and learn important lessons. “I will be traveling to Nashville, Tennessee, to compete at the HOSA international leadership conference! During this trip, I am most excited to gain new leadership skills and opportunities beneficial to my future in medicine. I also looking forward to meeting others with a passion for healthcare,” Cheyenne remarks as she is one of the few Maui High School students who qualified for internationals.
Like Cheyenne, Macy Filazar will also be traveling due to competitions, “I will be playing in basketball tournaments in Kona, O‘ahu, Chicago, Ohio, Northern and Southern California. I’m most excited about Chicago because I’ve never been there before and it’s just such a fun group of girls to play with. I’m also excited to see the different competition at each tournament.”
With only fifty-one days till the start of the new school year, upcoming seniors are trying to make the most of their last high school summer. Through new experiences, productive preparation and well-deserved relaxation, seniors will be ready for senior year’s challenges.
Google® Is Not Everything is a monthly column authored by high school students. The title of the column emphasizes education is more than just googling a topic. Google® is a registered trademark. This month’s guest columnist is Jazmyne Faith Viloria, a Senior at Maui High School. She is a member of SaberScribes (Maui High’s journalism club), Historian of the Video Club and Team Captain of Blue Thunder, Maui High’s Robotics club. Jazmyne is in the ACOM Pathway at Maui High, focusing on videography and photography. In her free time, she sews and refashions old clothes, journals, edits photos/videos and loves to analyze lyrics in songs. She is the daughter of Ruth Sagisi and Rudy Viloria.