The Final Testament of High School: Senior Experience


Kate Cressey

Seniors can’t wait for senior experience!

Gigi Richardson, Sentry Staff Reporter

Flash forward seniors and it is the last day of class (ever!). Advanced Placement (AP) exams and finals are over. After four years of dreading walking this school’s hallways every day, high school is coming to an end. While most cannot wait for college and to get out of here, many still feel like it went too fast and that it feels like the first day of freshman year. While asking yourself where the time went, graduation comes to mind. Walking across the stage to that diploma you worked so hard for. Seeing your parents in the audience tearing up. It seems so surreal. Everything is set in place. BUT WAIT, halt the cap throwing, do not forget Senior Experience!

Oh yes, Senior Experience. That three weeks of an internship instead of classes. The very last, but very important, event before graduation. While some may have had it figured out since they entered these hallowed doors, I’m not talking to them. Yes, I’m talking to those people who cheered when the application deadline was moved back, extremely confused on how to get a great Senior Experience. This is aimed at you. Here are some tips and tricks on everything needed to truly enjoy Senior Experience.

Talk to Mrs. Meadows first. She is the go to person on all things Senior Experience.

Go to the Yorktown Homepage. Click Senior on the drop down menu from the Students tab. Scroll down the left hand column and click Senior Experience. Make sure all the deadlines are met with all the right forms.

Think about what interests you.

“Something they might be interested in, something that might be fun, something different that maybe the average person does not do. Keep an open mind,” said Health teacher and Senior Experience advisor Stephanie Meadows.

If still stuck on what to do, follow the top three choices from past students.

“I see lots of kids applying for political internships since we have a variety of those in the area. On the [Capitol] Hill, senators, representatives, different lobbyists. Lots of education, since we have lots of schools. A lot of kids go back to their schools. And maybe the third would be medical. But mostly political,” said Meadows.

Contact and keep contacting mentors for internships.

“The hardest thing is making contact and hearing back from a mentor once making contact. This is not the mentor’s priority, so hearing back takes some time and kids have to push a little harder to hear back from them,” said Meadows.

Do not make just one plan.

“Have a backup plan. Have plan B, C, D, E and F. Keep an open mind. Do not think if you do not get something, that there is nothing else for you to do because there is something you could do. But definitely have plan B in place,” said Meadows.

Prepare for everything. Not only do you have to apply, but you have to nail the internship.

“Have a resume. Be prepared to go on an interview as some mentors want to know why do you want to do this, what background you have, what are your plans for the future. So definitely have a resume, be prepared for an interview and be professional. Exclamation point. Exclamation point. Exclamation point,” said Meadows.

Try to find a mentor and internship you will enjoy for three weeks, so make sure you will have a good relationship with your mentor.

“Usually if it is a bad experience, the few times there have been, [it] was because the mentor was a bad fit for them. I have had kids, but it has been a long time, [who] have gone into situations and they were literally told to clean the toilets. [This happens] if the mentor does not have an idea of what [Senior Experience] actually is,” said Meadows.

Finally, do not stress. Have fun and take the experience for everything it gives you.

“The experience is extremely beneficial. Lots of people who graduated have gotten summer jobs from their Senior Experience and then gone to college and gotten full time jobs with what they did for Senior Experience. And a lot of kids experience what they think they want to go into and realize ‘Oh. I hate this. This is awful.’ and then they do not waste four years on something that major,” said Meadows.

This may still seem like an overwhelming process, but not to worry, seniors have been doing this for years. Senior Emma Thurman made her search simple and gives great advice for people still searching.

“It was difficult to find what to do for Senior Experience at first. After looking for numerous internships I was exhausted. I finally just decided to go with something I love. My lacrosse coach is a huge inspiration to me and I thought to have her as a mentor would be amazing. It is tough to decide for sure but I cannot wait for the experience with an awesome mentor to guide me,” said Thurman.

Senior Experience is a once in a lifetime deal. It is important to tailor the experience to best fit your personality. Follow all these tips and the only thing left to worry about will be remembering where to put the tassel on your graduation cap!