Advice Column

By Talia Levin and Bella Nessim ‘20


Q: As a junior in high school, I am constantly being told that junior year is the most important year. Comments like these add an extra amount of stress to the stress I’m already experiencing. I’m curious— is junior year really the most important year of high school? Aren’t all years equally important? —Junior Jumble
A: The reason junior year might seem like the most important year is that the year is filled with standardized tests and college planning. Junior year pushes students to start thinking about their futures and exploring different career paths. For these reasons, people might say that junior year is the most important year of high school and the year that decides students’ future. That said, every year of high school is important! Junior year might seem the most pivotal, but it is crucial to work hard and try your best throughout all four years of high school, because every year counts.


Q: Currently, I am getting all A’s in my math class because the material happens to come easily to me. I am proud of the grade I am getting in this class, although I feel as if I am not being challenged enough. Should I play it safe and continue to get an A in the class I am currently in, or should I challenge myself and move to a higher math class, even if that means receiving a lower grade? —Easy A’s

A: While it’s important to not stay in a class only because it’s an easy A, you don’t necessarily have to put yourself in a potentially difficult and stressful situation just because you are doing well. You need to consider which is more important to you: pushing yourself or playing it safe. If you genuinely want to learn more math and move at a faster pace, you should move up. If you simply care about the grade and being able to finesse the system, then the class you’re in may be best for you. Talk to your advisor, parents, and math teacher to see what they think would be best for you.


Q: I’ve had a really hard time making friends so far. I don’t sit alone all the time or anything but it sucks to feel like I don’t have people I can talk to ever. What can I do to make friends without seeming weird or desperate? —Lonely Lad(y)

A: It’s totally normal to feel that, and I’ll bet a lot of the people who you think have a lot of friends feel the same way. You can take the next step beyond spending time with people to ask them to hang out. Talk about your classes or clubs and casually try to make plans around them. Joining a club or a team is another great way to make friends through shared experiences. You obviously don’t want to come across too strong, but don’t be nervous about spending time with people. The ones you want to spend time with are probably the ones who are open to new friends.


Please email your questions to taliale@heschel.org and isabellane@heschel.org.

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