Class of 2023 senior farewells


Jack Forrest, Website and News Magazine Editor

Is it really time to write this already?

I knew I’d have to at some point, but I honestly didn’t think it would be so soon. I used to scoff at my older relatives when they’d say: “high school goes by fast,” but here we are. It went by. Fast. 

I’m not going to pretend that I know some comprehensive secret about what it all means, or that my high school experience is reflective of everyone’s. I don’t and it isn’t. However, what I do know is that there are a few things that connect all of us.

For one, COVID. You knew it was coming. I couldn’t go without mentioning it, even if we’re all tired of thinking and hearing about it. However, I don’t think it has truly set in how influential it will end up being on all of us. A massive, unprecedented shutdown of society for months hit at, arguably, the most formative years of our lives. Many of us even lost someone close to us. Who knows what impact the pandemic period will have on us in the long run. 

Another thing we all share is the culture of our school. The environment we went to school in is unique to us. Nobody else out there will understand what AIM is, know which staircase is best (it’s the one by the elevator, by the way) or get our inside jokes and traditions. 

Lastly, we share that sudden feeling of “this is it” that I alluded to earlier. I don’t know how to describe that emotion. It’s some strange concoction of despair, joy, fear, relief, confusion and excitement for what the future holds. I can’t wait to go to IU in the fall, but I can’t deny that I’m going to miss Publications, Student Government and all of the people, classes and experiences that shaped me into who I am today. Who those people are and what those experiences were vary, but I’d wager we are all feeling those same feelings right about now.

Actually, I lied when I said I wouldn’t try to pretend to know what it all means. I’m going to pretend for a minute. I think what makes memories special is that they are so fleeting. If we got to live in our favorite point in time forever, would it still be our favorite moment? I don’t think so. So, as we all say goodbye to this chapter of our life, don’t try too desperately to cling on. Embrace the next steps. Never forget how you got here, but don’t let yourself get distracted from where you are now.

Finn Nowacki, Website and News Magazine Editor

I still remember the first day of my freshman year, I was so nervous I would get lost and low and behold, I couldn’t find the bus drop off point. After looking and running and looking some more, I eventually stumbled upon door three and found my way onto the bus I’d take home until my junior year.

To this day I still think this anecdote is a pretty nice metaphor for high school. It’s an emotional rollercoaster filled with happiness, stress, excitement, tears, relief and just about every other adjective in the dictionary. If anyone tells you they have high school down pat, they are probably lying (as of writing this I’m 41 days from walking across the stage and I’m still figuring it out). You get as close as you can, and you do your best and even when you think you know what’s coming next, the world will throw a two-year pandemic, a bomb threat or a natural disaster your way, so you readjust and keep moving.

If my high school experience is me running to the bus, I’m sprinting over the last few sidewalk slabs and I can see my seat on the bus. I’ve been saying I’ve been ready to board the bus to the next stop in my life for months, but now that I’m almost there, I’ll admit, there are many aspects of this place that I will miss: talking with my friends in the morning before class, going to study hall, eating lunch and simply walking out of school to my car with all of my friends.

Everyone has a different experience when they come into this building, and mine is probably no more or less unique than any other of the 652 people in my graduating class. Even so, it is still my experience, and I am unbelievably grateful for all the friends, memories and opportunities that have been presented to me by being a Trojan. 

Lyss Wischmeyer, Coverage Editor

During my first Publications class, I sat through the class introduction in disbelief. Warner, Tedrow and everyone else willingly sitting in that room seemed crazy. The more I heard of the class’s responsibilities the crazier everyone seemed. My head spun just from trying to process everything. Wondering what I just got myself into, I walked out of class that first day fully intending to drop the course. I grew to love the class and the people in it after I decided to stick it out. You get the opportunity to see student stories be told and documented. This class has challenged me to work harder than I thought possible and see the amazing results. When I started this year looking at all we had to accomplish, my head began to spin just like my first class. This time however, it was a very short-lived moment. I looked around the room and saw all of the familiar faces ready to help accomplish the deadlines. Fast forward these past few months and my senior year is coming to an end. Now, I’m thinking of everything I will miss about Publications. What stood out to me the most was the people you meet through this class. The connections you make through Publications are unforgettable. Whether it’s other staff members or a student that you meet through an interview, you are constantly building friendships. Warner and Tedrow deserve a special thank you for running this amazing program. Without them it would not be possible to produce great content and find every student’s story.

Amanda Zheng, Coverage Editor

Oh so you mean I have to stop random people? Random! I have to stop random people in the hallway and just ask them, ask them questions?” 

I was in shock. I thought back to how I had written the words “ Student Publications: Media Artsonto my green scheduling paper and turned it in the week before. It was the final week of my eighth grade year and I had reluctantly agreed to take Publications for my fine arts credit after being coerced by a friend. I vowed over the summer that I would take it off before the beginning of freshman year… Flash forward four years, I’m a senior and have been part of publications for all four years of high school! 

I remember sitting through my first Publications class listening to Mrs.Tedrow and Ms.Warner speak of the responsibilities staff members would have, the kinds of assignments and content students were responsible for and the unique structure of the class. There were no required assignments or tasks; students were responsible for taking initiative for their own work. We were on our own. Leaving the classroom, I was instantly filled with lingering feelings of dread and worry. But even stronger was the understanding that Publications would be nothing like any class l had ever taken or would ever take in my high school career. 

Because of Publications, I’ve learned how to effectively interview students, take quality yearbook photos, write in a journalistic style and better manage my time. I’ve chased students down hallways for quotes, performed a plethora of interviews and have stood in the cold and rain to take sports photos for the yearbook. As I leave high school, I will forever be grateful for the memories and experiences Publications has gifted me with, as well as Tedrow and Warner for their guidance and patience and all of the incredible staff members and editors I have worked alongside these four years.

Rachel Ingle, Yearbook Editor

After having Mrs. Tedrow sophomore year for Honors English 10, somehow she managed to convince me to join this class called “Student Publications” junior year – the class of people who always managed to ask me for an interview at the most inconvenient times. Walking into Room 150, some random early college room I had only ever passed by on my way to science class, on the first day of junior year for staff member training, I faced a room full of students who seemed to all know each other already. Ms. Warner, a teacher who I had never even heard of before that day, stood at her desk hollering about something I can’t remember now, probably some sort of IU sport. I sat by the only person I knew, Alec, while Warner and Tedrow began the run-down of the class. The only thing I can clearly remember from that lecture now, and that I will never forget, is Rule #1: “Do not get us fired.” And because of this rule, I will keep my farewell short and refrain from too much storytelling of my time in Publications (what happens in Room 102 stays in Room 102).

Jump to two years later, I can say I have truly found my niche in this class. After focusing on the yearbook for most of my junior year, I was promoted to yearbook editor for my senior year. Maddi, Alec and I have surely made a terrific trio this year creating and editing the entire yearbook (probably the best yearbook editors ever). We definitely had really high highs and really low lows along the way, but in the end, we will keep this book for the rest of our lives with the memories of our friendship encapsulated within it.