Kathryn Vanden Hoek
A lot can change in four years. Maybe it’s a style transformation, or a new car, different vacations or even new family members. And surroundings majorly affect the way individuals grow. I can safely say that Brentwood has changed me, and so has the BHS journalism class.
I came into high school with quite the picture-perfect dream. My goals included cheer captain, prom queen, Stuco president, FCA leader, calc kid, and maybe snag a cute boy if that was written in the stars.
I can tell you right now, I did none of those. Literally. And I am completely happy with all of the changes and choices I made that have nothing to do with any of those! As a teenager, I began to discover myself, and realize that what I thought I wanted may not be where my future lies.
It was specifically a creative writing assignment, two actually, during my junior year that altered my path. A descriptive essay and a personal narrative later, and I was utterly in love with writing. The silly thing is I have been writing since I was in middle school, but didn’t realize my potential until those assignments. Suddenly, my gears switched.
Senior year I was handed the reins to “The Eagle,” our first online newspaper. It later became “The Nest,” because how much cooler is that? I was able to do whatever I wanted, take the token of interest I had in “journalism”, and run with it. I played with layouts, colors, names, processes, and stories. The Nest began to bloom along with myself, and I can honestly say it has been such a fulfilling experience.
And as I grew throughout the course of 2016 to 2020 and continue to change now, I have learned a few key things. One, I hate math and won’t be doing any calculus anytime soon, and two, being cheer captain isn’t the end all be all. But thirdly and most importantly, you have to let go of your set vision and expectations. You must have goals, but it is so crucial to roll with the punches and let yourself switch ideas, try something new, and just dive in. I did that with The Nest, and it led me to a scholarship to the first journalism school in the nation and a new road I am ready to travel on.
Change is good and inevitable, and I know most of you have yet to discover your true potential. So go and roll with it, be ready to jump tracks, and just embrace all the growth that is about to come.