The Emotional Roller Coaster of Freshman Year

Cathleen Krabak ('19) enters her senior year learning how the freshmen feel at Nardin, and in return she has collected some useful senior advice for the Class of 2022.

Back to Article
Back to Article

The Emotional Roller Coaster of Freshman Year

On pajama day, the freshmen celebrated with a pizza lunch and dance party in the gym.

On pajama day, the freshmen celebrated with a pizza lunch and dance party in the gym.

On pajama day, the freshmen celebrated with a pizza lunch and dance party in the gym.

On pajama day, the freshmen celebrated with a pizza lunch and dance party in the gym.

C. Krabak '19, Writer

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.

Email This Story

For the majority of young adults, freshman year can be a daunting time full of change, expectation, and growth. Opening up students to new liberties, the milestone marks the beginning of the lengthy transition into adulthood. Having spent almost two months within the Nardin community, the Class of 2022 is settling into the high school experience as they approach the midway point of their first semester. Unlike previous years, however, the freshman class has had to adapt to many of Nardin’s recently instituted policies including the new block schedule. To get a feel for how their year has gone so far, I interviewed several students:


What is your favorite part about Nardin so far?

“My favorite thing about Nardin so far is all of the new activities and rooms. I really like x block because you can explore a lot of fun things.” A. Steiner ‘22

“I just love the overall environment. The students and teachers are all so supportive and helpful.” M. Finn ‘22

“I really love the schedule, it takes a lot of stress off me”. N. Sleiman ‘22


What are you most looking forward to this year?

“I am most looking forward to winter mission.” A. Steiner ‘22

“House cup finals” M. Khan ‘22

“Meeting new people and just making it through the first year of high school.” P. Leftwich ‘22


Are you nervous about anything this year? About high school in general?

“I am nervous to keep my grades up. High school is a bit harder than expected.

final exams” S. Emke ‘22

“Homework, tests, quizzes and teachers” H. Khuu ‘22

“I am nervous that I might not be able to finish homework or a project in time because of sports.” N. Sleiman ‘22


Upperclassmen lead the freshmen in a dance!


Do you feel like you’ve been able to adjust well over the last month? What has been the hardest part?

“Yes, the staff and my peers have made it easy for me to adjust. One of the hardest parts to adjust to is some of the formats for teaching.” H. McMullen ‘22

“Yes, I feel like I have been able to adjust perfectly at Nardin. The hardest part is getting used to the schedule and trying to memorize where you’re going.” N. Sleiman ‘22

“I have certainly been able to adjust well. The hardest part has been letting go of the past, regardless of how happy I am in the present. I think any middle schooler has trouble switching schools in general.” M. Finn ‘22


When considering what they like about Nardin, the majority of freshman commented on the new schedule, with over half of the surveyed students claiming that it has impacted their learning experience in a positive manner. Likewise, the excitement regarding new programs such as Wintermission and Nardin’s house system is obvious at this point in the year as students look forward to experiencing them for the first time. So far Nardin’s innovative policies have been received positively, and it will be interesting to see how their impact progresses throughout the year.


Though the freshman are enjoying all that Nardin has to offer, many of the classic concerns linger with the Class of 2022. Several interviewed students expressed their apprehension concerning their workload over the next four years, and many claimed that it has been hard to adjust to the rigor of high school courses. As in any transition, the shift from middle school to high school is in no way meant to be simple. Though the academic standards can be intimidating at first, they are not impossible to manage. To reassure our freshman and offer a little perspective, I asked some seniors to share any advice regarding their time at Nardin:

“My high school years have been some of the best of my life… You have to learn how to not stress the small things and try not to lose your cool when you have all that work. Don’t focus on the negatives, focus on the positives because those will be what’s important to you at the end of the four years. Be excited to experience new things and meet new people.” M. Higgins ‘19

“Get ahead on your work and don’t be afraid to talk to teachers (they’re actually really cool and not scary). Also, get involved in the school; you’ll have way more fun!” C. Wischerath ‘19

With these words in mind, the freshman class can hopefully not just look forward to the next few years, but enjoy the present. After all, freshman year is about making friends, having fun, and creating memories that will last far beyond graduation.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email