Beware Seniors: A Contagious Disease Is Spreading


[ot-caption title=”Alec Mccue, a Pine Crest senior, is in study hall, and he might have a case of senioritis. (via Tara Shecter, sophomore)”]

As the end of the year approaches, high school seniors across the country are focused on one thing: graduation. It seems as though they have one foot out the door and the other foot trying to avoid any serious work in the last few months of high school. This is a common condition known as senioritis, and it is an ailment a doctor cannot heal.  Many of us have repeatedly heard of the term “senioritis,” but what does it really mean? According to Merriam Webster Dictionary, senioritis is “an ebbing of motivation and effort by school seniors as evidenced by tardiness, absences, and lower grades.”

With the college application process complete and freedom from the confines of high school looming, the symptoms of senioritis at Pine Crest can be seen everywhere. Many students have already been accepted into colleges, causing students to lose the motivation to maintain high grades in their current classes. They believe that there is no need to work hard now that they have achieved their goal.  However, many seniors need to be reminded that a college acceptance can be revoked if the senior slacks too much and their grades suffer. In a couple weeks, seniors will be hearing from schools in regular decision, so this epidemic will only continue on its downward spiral.

Although more often than not, senioritis is the punch line of a joke; students recognize the real impact of the illness.  According to Pine Crest senior Hailey Weinberg, “Senioritis is a real thing. Many seniors have lost motivation. Some of them think that high school does not matter anymore because they are in college, but this is not true.”

Pine Crest administration has some policies in place to help combat senioritis. One such policy is that students who have below a 75 average in one class are transferred to study hall during their free period. Senioritis is evident, considering the surprisingly high amount of PC seniors in study hall. According to Polina Moisseeva, a senior who landed in study hall, “I just sit there looking at a wall. I think that there are about 120 seniors out of 200 in study hall.” According to Mr. Pierson, there are actually 29 students in study hall. While  Teachers also recognize the symptoms and try to adjust their teaching styles to overcome senioritis. Mrs. Venne, a Pine Crest math teacher, works hard to keep her seniors interested in class. She explained that she tries “to use relevant studies or examples so that students are invested and engaged in what we are learning.”

Mr. Pierson, the Assistant Head of the Upper School and Dean of Students, agrees that senioritis is a real thing, but he thinks that there are ways to avoid it. He explained, “My message to all students, including seniors, is to stay true to who they are in all aspects of their lives; this pertains to academics, attendance, and extracurricular involvements.” He adds, “Always finish as strong as you start no matter what it is. I hope that all students at Pine Crest follow through with that.” Mr. Pierson’s message is not only relevant for seniors, but to all Pine Crest students in their daily lives.

Senioritis is understandable. Seniors are counting down the days until summer, instead of counting the numbers on their Calculus homework. After four years of working hard through high school, many seniors are tired and burnt out, especially in the second semester. As the last days of high school approach, seniors are redirecting their focus on upcoming events, such as prom, graduation, and college. It will be just a few more months until they walk across the stage and graduate. With a diploma in hand, they will be on to the next challenge; senioritis will be a distant memory as they become a freshman all over again, but this time, in college.