By Nika Chin
Senioritis can be defined as a “sickness” that strikes high school seniors and could even strike early junior year. Symptoms include laziness, old athletic shirts, sweatpants, a lack of studying, repeated absences and a generally dismissive attitude.
The only known cure is a phenomenon known as graduation.
Senior Grant Mitchell said 11 years of hard work should have been long enough.
“The end of high school has never seemed so near to me, but it’s here now and I can’t wait to get it over with,” said Mitchell.
As graduation nears, seniors suffering from senioritis say they want to choose their social lives over their academic integrity.
Senior Dakota Arnold said he wants to spend more time with his friends and not worry about schoolwork.
“With it being the final year, surely a lot of people would much rather be spending their time with friends, not studying,” said Arnold.
According to science teacher Beth Fitzgerald, senioritis exists among many of her students.
“Students who have always been very conscientious start to get tired of the same material they have been taught, especially since it’s their fourth year of high school,” said Fitzgerald. “They don’t complete homework nearly as much as they normally would and they procrastinate more.”
Mitchell agreed that senioritis made it nearly impossible for him to accomplish anything on time.
“I started turning my homework late, getting projects done late, and eventually came into school late almost every day,” said Mitchell.
Senior Haley Rose said senioritis definitely affected her this year because she began to stop trying as hard as she had her previous years of high school.
“I slowly stopped doing homework or just waited until the last minute,” said Rose. “I just got too lazy to participate in school.”
Fitzgerald said senioritis might take affect either the beginning of the school year or early during the second semester.
“For some kids, the change is gradual and for others it is almost immediately,” said Fitzgerald. “They know they’re seniors and they’re almost done.”
Often times, seniors with friends outside of high school develop senioritis because they see their graduated friends being able to do whatever they desire in their free time.
Senior Katie Tarr said she is jealous of her friends in college that do not have to wake up at 6:30 a.m. every weekday.
“I don’t want to get up for school, see school, or do school because currently senioritis is taking over,” said Tarr.
Math teacher Becky Cambron said it is important to keep in mind that not every senior has to suffer from senioritis, because there are many seniors that are aware of the consequences of slacking and are able to avoid them.
“It’s easy for students to feel like they’re ready to quit working once they’ve gotten accepted and there are definitely some that do, but there are also students who try to maintain their grades,” said Cambron.
Many juniors feel they are starting to develop senioritis early, since senior year is approaching.
Junior Andrew Vince hopes to stay on track his senior year by working hard to raise his GPA, but is fully aware that he will get lazy knowing that he is almost graduated.
“I’ll be realistic and say that I’ll get lazy at each semester because I just want to be done and have a break, but ultimately I know I’ll work hard,” said Vince.
Junior Olyvia Hundley said she wants to get into Vanderbilt her senior year and agreed senioritis would be an obstacle.
“I am already starting to get lazy, so by the time I’m a senior, I am going to be done with high school,” said Hundley.
Juniors and seniors are sharing the same feeling around this time of year, however, seniors are focusing more on taking that extra step towards college.
Arnold plans to go to college after graduation and start a new chapter in his life.
“I just tell myself to ‘work hard now, rest easy later,’ and that keeps me going so I can get high school over with already,” said Arnold.
Senior Emily Exline said that getting accepted into colleges makes it difficult for seniors to stay focused.
“Once I got into the college I wanted to go to, it was hard to motivate myself to do all my school work for the classes I still have to complete,” said Exline.
Exline said motivation is a crucial factor when it comes to setting goals senior year.
“What keeps me motivated is knowing the fact that colleges can revoke my acceptance letter, so I remind myself that these classes are preparing me for college and I need to continue to push myself,” said Exline.
It is not impossible to prevent senioritis, but the first step is to accept a little challenge and earn the diploma instead of expecting it.
“It helps me when I remember how much I hated not doing as well as planned,” said Rose. “I want to feel like I deserve to hold a diploma in my hand.”