Google Is Not Everything…

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Jhanessty Vaye Bautista | Maui High School, Class of 2024

It is T-minus a month until the Class of 2024 graduates! Everyone has began reminiscing about the past four years, from starting their high school career behind a screen to being one of the first classes to experience what life was like before the pandemic. It is a bittersweet feeling to graduate and embark on a new life journey, and we have all been reflecting on how the journey started.

From an early age, some people knew exactly what they wanted to do while others did not have any thought in mind. I was part of that second group. Funnily enough, at five years old in elementary school, I dreamt of becoming a singer and living in Europe! The dream differs from the picture I have planned for the near future as I aspire to major in Psychology; my career aspiration still needs definition.

Roxelle Trisha Mae Magliba

Similarly, Roxelle Trisha Mae Magliba‘s dreams of becoming a baker evolved into event planning. “I was amazed by the beauty of baking and creating different desserts. Though I strive to become an event planner after furthering my education in nursing, there’s still a connection between who I wanted to be then and now as both require owning my own business and serving the community,” she expresses.

Alexandra Luisdottir Perez

Alexandra Luisdottir Perez is one of the few whose dreams stayed the same from when they were younger. “When I was younger, I wanted to be a veterinarian; that hasn’t changed and I’m still pursuing that same goal,” she explains.

Dylan Domingo

Dylan Domingo and Noah Santiago shared similar childhood aspirations as both surrounded the world of technology. Dylan describes how video games impacted his life. “When I was younger, I wanted to be a game creator. Back then, I was inspired by all the video games I loved playing growing up, realizing I wanted to make the same games. This dream pushed me towards my career goal of wanting to become a Software Engineer.”

Noah Santiago

Noah describes how his exposure to technology grew into an interest in business. “As a kid, I always wanted to do something involving computers and technology because I was surrounded by tech for basically all my life. As I plan to major in Applied Business Information Systems, I will finally learn more about the technology and software we use daily.”

Things change; that is a fact. And during senior year, those changes can happen randomly at any time. I, for one, have had about ten life-changing revelations since 2024 started. While beginning senior year, it is essential to set goals to accomplish regardless of or even regarding those changes.

Alexandra, Roxelle and Dylan’s goals included maintaining their GPA to become one of the valedictorians at graduation. They also worked, however, to enjoy their senior years and succeed in their Senior projects. “I did accomplish [my goals]; I’ve maintained a 4.0 and spent a lot of time with my loved ones on the island,” Alexandra says.

Dylan adds “My goal for senior year was to make the most of it both academically and socially. Not only did I want to try my best in my academics this year but I also wanted to have fun this senior year with my friends and hobbies.”

Roxelle expresses her gratitude for her experience during her senior year thus far. “Fortunately, my senior project had a great turnout and over 1000 students and families attended my cultural event. Though my goal of becoming a valedictorian is still yet to be [determined], I believe I’m on the right path to achieving it.”

Noah’s goal during his senior year was to set up his future. “My main goal was to figure out what I wanted to do in college because, at the time, I was passionate about media but also open to new endeavors. With my teacher’s help, I found a new interest in business, which sparked my excitement to learn again,” he says.

That is why future seniors out there should not be afraid of change. You are defining what your life will look like for the next four years or even twenty. The things you are doing now might differ from the version of you in the future, so if you decide to do a complete 180 in your senior year, embrace the change.

“To upcoming seniors, I recommend taking time alone to reflect on who you are. You have gotten this far in your high school career, so look back and appreciate how much you have accomplished. Also, write these down so you can get a head start for scholarships because they will ask you many questions, and sometimes, it may be hard to write about yourself,” Noah shares.

Alexandra and Roxelle share the same advice for future seniors: Create a balance between your personal and academic lives. Firstly, Roxelle shares her take on why balance is important: “It is essential to live your last year of high school and prepare for college by applying to scholarships and schools. Because I was so stacked with my studies and extracurricular activities, I barely had time to hang out with my friends and apply to the colleges I wanted.”

Alexandra shares tips on achieving that balance: “A) Get your senior project done early (in the summer); it saves you so much time and stress when you don’t have to squeeze it into a busy senior schedule. B) Make time in your schedule for work on college and scholarship applications and time just for you.” She notes “Make sure your school-life balance is solid because you’ll need that skill when you head to university.”

Lastly, the most essential advice is to have fun. “The main reason ‘senioritis’ happens is that people don’t try to enjoy themselves during their senior year. It’s your last year of high school, and you’ve grinded it out the last three years. Of course, stay on top of your academics but enjoy this year,” Dylan exclaims.

A little trip down memory lane never hurt anybody! The Class of 2024 feels truly fortunate for what they have been able to experience in light of the past few years. As some will stay and some will leave, we will have these core memories of living on Maui. A hui hou Class of 2024, let us give these last few days all we got!

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 Jhanessty Vaye Bautista, a Senior at Maui High School. She is a President of Maui High’s Key Club, vice president of Maui High’s Filipino Cultural Club, Executive Secretary of Maui High’s Student Government, and a member of the National Honor Society and Creative Media Club. Jhanessty is in the ACOM Pathway at Maui High, focusing on graphic design and entrepreneurship. In her free time, she reads books of all genres, sketches outlines for her new graphics project, sings karaoke alone or with a group of her close family and friends, and loves anything involving the popular video game Minecraft Bee. She is the daughter of Vanessa and Jhon Boy Bautista.