the westminster news
Published by the students of Westminster School
By Alex Shao '22
As spring slowly approaches this year, we are all excited to spend more time outside. However, all we have are 24 hours, so the more you spend outside, the less you are working. Many people are familiar with the term “senioritis,” which is often used to describe seniors like me, whose motivations are lost and performance in school decreases during senior spring. Just like what you think it means, “junioritis” describes juniors who slack, just like the seniors, when in fact juniors should be having one of their toughest terms at Westminster. Based on my observations of this term, I believe it is rightful for me to say that besides senioritis, “junioritis” has also prevailed on our campus. When I am walking back from dinner or hanging out at the grill, I always feel that I am surrounded by juniors who are chilling there, not working hard or considering their future. As I think back to my junior spring, I remember myself spending hours and hours going over my APUSH notes, doing problem sets of integrals, and participating in extracurricular activities like writing for the newspaper. And I wasn’t the only one doing these things since it was commonly recognized among my friends that the college process was starting that spring. As we are about to get into the AP weeks, I do not think the presence of “junioritis” has faded in any way.
Prompted by my curiosity about the scale of junioritis at our school and its possible impact, I interviewed many juniors and even freshmen to find out their opinions on this problem which has affected almost all members of the Fifth Form. First of all, to my surprise, 100% of the juniors I interviewed admitted that they have junioritis at this moment, that they are tempted to waste time watching YouTube or playing video games instead of preparing for the AP examinations and choosing a college list. Many also claimed that it gets harder every day to focus and work as they see seniors roaming around carelessly, getting to spend time outside at a point in the year many would say is the most beautiful. Especially with the vibrant nature of spring, the juniors all claim that they are tempted to just slack. When asked about their plan for senior fall and college, many of them have the optimism that time will be their best friend as they will magically figure it out when the time comes. In response to these opinions, I worry that once the students begin to slack right now, it will become much harder for them to get through senior fall and the intense application season next year. Even after they enter college, the lost work ethic might never be retrieved again. As I proclaim to be somewhat of an expert on college applications and senior year, I believe that time does not change how we act, and that you have to stay motivated in order to get through the toughest terms of your high school career, so starting a series of hard months with a case of junioritis is for sure not the ideal solution.
Quite a few of them believe that sports will help their college application process and are dedicated to continuing their path. This is an interesting perspective of junioritis—the temporary slack in junior spring only serves as a break before another athletic season next year. Most of them seem to stay on top of their schedules, balancing entertainment and work while giving themselves a little time to slack and relax. Though they say they are affected by junioritis, their mindset is clearly dichotomous to the others. This contrast made me come to the conclusion that when juniors have a clear goal, such as getting into D3 schools for swimming or soccer, they are more likely to avoid junioritis compared to those who just flow through their day, believing that they can save all the work for summer and senior fall. I predict that junioritis might be the cause of their ultimate downfall next year when they realize that they do not have enough time to do everything they need to do. At the end of this article, I want to make it clear that I am not against spending time with friends, enjoying nature, or just relaxing, but to all the juniors, I hope you won’t regret the choices you make this spring when you look back at it next year.