January 17, 2019
One could describe stress as high school’s weapon of choice. With homework, internships, and efforts towards a social life, the life of a high school student doesn’t always seem like High School Musical. Atholton seniors Jessie Zinderman and Zach Garrigus are no strangers to this jam-packed lifestyle. They have committed themselves to many different activities that demand their attention on the daily. Here’s a day in the life of two of Atholton’s busiest students.
Day in the Life of Jessie
6:00 am Wakes up and gets her “ten minutes in the bathroom” before her brother starts pounding on the door
6:10 am Eats her Special K Chocolatey Delight Cereal and dresses to impress
6:35 am Makes lunch to enjoy during her thirty, fleeting minutes of relaxation time
6:40 am Takes her dog Paco for his morning walk
6:50 am Leaves for school with her brother and neighbor
6:50-7:05 am Jam session to Ariana Grande’s Thank u, Next to get her in that girl boss mood to let the world know that “girls rule”
7:25 am School is in session!
1st Period Comparative Government and Politics AP
2nd Period Statistics AP
*Homework currently accumulated to 20 minutes*
3rd Period Dance III/IV: “Relaxing” and “less structured classwork”
4A Physics (stress level rises)
4B English 12 AP
5th Period Spanish V AP (stress is at an all-time high)
*Homework increases by an hour and 30 minutes*
6th Period Intern/Mentor G/T: Out into the real world we go!
1:15 pm Leaves school to start homework
2:30-3:30 pm Arrives back at Atholton for Allied Sports Practice
4:00 pm Studies with her friend Olivia at Dunkin Donuts and visits boyfriend, Ryan
4:30-8:30 pm Internship Opportunity with Teen Court, “a program that my mentor runs and it’s where teen jurors hear cases of juvenile offenders in Howard County and they give the deposition rather than the judge himself”
9:00 pm Family dinner in the Zinderman House: This is where the family fantasy football leagues discussions take place. Go against the “undefeated” Mama Zinderman at your own risk
9:30 pm Finishes the homework that failed to make the cut at Dunkin
10:00-10:30 pm Daily showing of The Great British Baking Show (Jessie is “still currently on Season 1”)
11:00 pm Long-awaited bedtime (Jessie’s “personal favorite” part of the day)
Total Homework Time: 3.5 hours
After School Activities: 3 per day
Day in the Life of Zach
5:25 am Wakes up and eats his daily Pop Tart
5:30 am Gets ready for school
5:40-6:30 am Study time! (he likes to have material fresh on the mind in case of a dreaded pop quiz)
6:45 am Leaves house for school
6:55 am Arrives at school and parks in same parking spot everyday!!
7:25 am School is in session!
1st Period Advanced Theater IV: Don’t forget your lines! The show must go on!
2nd Period Television: Project Screening Today!
3rd Period Advanced Composition with Mr. Stuppy who’s a “riot”
*The morning is filled with art courses where most of the fun happens!*
4A English 12 AP: Be on high alert for a pop quiz!
5th Period Calculus AB AP: “not a fan”
*Stress is at an all-time high after math!*
6th Period Psychology AP
2:30 pm Eats “dinner” and get as much homework done as humanly possible before heading back to school
3:30-4:30 pm First theater rehearsal of the day!
5:00-7:00 pm Assists with theater tech for the other art departments
7:00-9:00 pm Rehearsal for Shrek the Musical: Sing, dance, and act the stress away (hopefully)
9:15 pm Arrives home and finishes all the homework left behind
11:00 pm Collapses on bed in exhaustion
Total Homework Time: 4.5 hours
After School Activities: All Theater!!
Most would think just looking at these schedules is overwhelming, so the question is: Why do it? Believe it or not, it’s not as bad as it seems, according to Zinderman. “I’m aware that I’m really busy but I feel like it’s taught me how to manage the stress by now.” Like Zinderman, Garrigus is also no stranger to stress management. “It’s definitely stressful,” said Garrigus. “The thing that really irritates me is how late I need to stay up because sleep deprivation isn’t fun for anyone. So it’s a bit punishing.”
Both Garrigus and Zinderman stated that their time management skills have improved on huge scales, something Zinderman plans to continue in college (with a less loaded schedule). “I feel like college is where you go to experience a bunch of new things,” said Zinderman. “Right now I’m involved in things I’ve been doing since freshman year but in college, I get to pick and choose.” Zinderman plans to enjoy her time as a college student with her same work ethic, but more time to explore.
Garrigus, on the other hand, strives to continue his dedication to the theater. Although Garrigus isn’t the biggest fan of his current stress level, he knows it’s worth it in order to achieve what he wants. Striving to be a film major next year has its own potential for some busy days. “I plan to get my courses in college scheduled to be best for whatever I want to be doing. If that means I’m gonna be up really late and have to always be busy then I guess I’ll have to deal with that,” he said. It is clear that if it means doing what he loves, Garrigus won’t shy away from a hectic lifestyle.
The schedules speak for themselves. Both of these students share similar struggles with a grueling daily routine. This doesn’t take away from their outlook towards a bright future. The hours spent walking past those green lockers may seem draining at times, but if these two are any indication, those hectic days seem to be worth it.