New ninth graders reflect on their school experience

New ninth grade students have been adjusting to the school year since they began Harvard-Westlake. These students are entering an environment that has already been developing for two years, so their adjustment is bound to be challenging. The new students have to break through the mold and make all new friends, even after everyone has already gone through this adjustment period. Sharing their experiences can hopefully comfort future incoming ninth graders and show them that the transition does not have to be so daunting and difficult.

With the end of the first semester approaching, new interviews were conducted to mark the progress of the new ninth graders. They spoke about their sports, academic and social transition into the school, and how they have adjusted thus far.

A new student spoke on her move from her previous school and how she is doing now that she has been here for half of a school year.

“It was a little difficult because I came from a really small school going into a really big school but it has been great so far because it is such a big community and it’s really nice,” Kennedy Hill ‘22 said.

Another student spoke about his transition and the warm welcome he received when coming here. He also expressed his familiarity with the school prior to attending because his sister was in the grade above him.

“It was good. Everybody was very welcoming but I knew what to expect because my sister went here the year before,” said Sonny Heyes ‘22.

Harvard-Westlake requires students to find a balance between school sports and their academic work since both are so prominent. For a new student, this can be challenging.

“I play volleyball and its different from my old school because we were a small school, and we were kind of terrible at sports, and Harvard-Westlake is really good at sports so that is awesome. [The transition] was very difficult at first because it was such a big transition and I didn’t really know what to do, but then I found my way,” Hill said.

Heyes spoke on how playing football at Harvard-Westlake (HW) is so different from his old school.

“I play football. [Joining the Harvard-Westlake team] was good because my old school didn’t have many facilities, and Harvard-Westlake has lots of facilities so it’s good,” Heyes said.

When following up with a student interviewed prior, he spoke on his balance with extracurriculars.

“It was challenging at first but its gotten easier as time has gone on.” Niko Price ’22 said.

He also spoke on his transition into the school.

“I feel like I have transitioned pretty well going into second semester and I’m ready for the next couple of years at this school.”

Although it can be challenging to adjust to a new school environment, these students have progressed and transitioned well, and the school has provided them with the resources they need to be successful and welcomed.

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