By now, you’ve found your classes, gotten your laptops, and charged your cell phones.  You’re in the first few weeks of the school year.  Do you feel ready?

Future Achievers Te’a Tate and Haylee Croslow who graduated from Richmond High School last year didn’t always feel ready either.

Being prepared for school is a challenge for all of us.  And while we’d like to pretend it’s as simple as having the supplies together, high school presents a lot more difficulties than a forgotten binder or broken pencil lead.  

As for academics, many of us struggle with organization, focus, and motivation.  We question what the purpose of school is and why we are learning things we don’t imagine using in the real world.  

To keep herself motivated, Haylee used to remind herself, “There’s something out there I want to do.  High school isn’t going to last forever, but a [career] will last most of your life.”  She knew high school was an important part of getting her the career she wanted.

Most of us also struggle with relationships– both friends and partners.  Maybe we take pride in being different from others, but that leaves us feeling lonely.  Maybe we have a good group of friends, but there always seems to be drama.  Maybe we are bullied.  Maybe we are ignored.  Maybe we are adored but we are always pretending.  

Haylee is in college now, and her advice for relationships is to take advantage of high school.  “Make as many friends as possible.”

Some of us are also facing challenges others don’t see– bullying, racism, sexism, financial problems, abuse at home, extreme anxiety, thoughts of dying, or drug problems.  

When you find yourself in these situations, Haylee’s advice is to, “Get help as soon as possible.”  Visit your school guidance counselor for resources and help on these challenging issues.  You are never alone!  There are adults who care about you and are available to help!

High school can be an “exciting time” as I heard often enough from adults and community members when I was in school.  But more and more, it is also a challenging time.  Future Achievers understands the struggle and is here to help you prepare for the future.

Take some encouragement from Te’a.  She says, “Everybody struggles… Fight until the very, very end and be one of the ones who overcome their struggles.  I was almost one of the people who couldn’t, but realizing how low I had to be to think I couldn’t make it– was all the motivation I needed to keep fighting.  No one was going to be able to tell me I didn’t make it.  Don’t let anyone tell you the same!” 

Keep your head up.  Haylee encourages those of you looking forward to college that, “Everything changes.  The people you grow up with become more mature.  Classrooms are so much more different.”  She encourages those of you thinking about college not to worry about what your classmates are doing after school, but to focus on your own goals.  Her experience is that once you get out of high school, college students are focused on their own learning.

Congratulations Te’a Tate, Haylee Croslow, and Jason Isom– Future Achievers and 2022 high school graduates!  Te’a was connected with interior designers while working with Future Achievers and hopes to attend Ivy Tech for interior design.  Haylee has a passion for spreading awareness about eating disorders and mental health. She was connected with a Therapist and got help to create Kickin Eds . She is now attending IU East for Social Work.  Jason Isom expressed an interest in sports medicine while working with Future Achievers and was connected with an Athletic Trainer at Earlham College .  We look forward to seeing what awesome things you do in your futures!

Future Achievers invites you to get connected with one of your Life Coaches for help with looking beyond high school and getting motivated for the future.  If you are a Richmond High School student, you can find us in room 301 at RHS. 

Email for more information.