Senior making plans for graduation

With May approaching quicker than anticipated, senior Emma Pettit must finalize her future plans. “My teachers in elementary school always told me that my high school career would go by so fast and that I should enjoy the moment. I did not believe it, but now I know that’s true,” she said. 

Pettit, who attended Hudson schools up until her sophomore year when COVID hit, transferred to Cedar Falls her junior year. Pettit said that growing up, going to school was certainly hard for her. She said she has struggled with mental health issues since the fourth grade and Hudson was simply a bad fit. “Hudson was definitely not a good school district for me. I personally love Cedar Falls. The teachers here are so much more involved. I think in high school, it’s important to worry about the kids’ mental health,” Pettit said. 

She played football during middle school at Hudson and rugby her senior year at Cedar Falls. “My best memory from high school is definitely playing football. We won the state championship my freshman year. It was really fun. I was the only girl on the team, but I got along very well with the boys. In the end, it made me gain a lot of confidence,” she said. 

Pettit, who said she is scared about graduation on May 22, checks her grades constantly. “It’s so stressful, and I have no idea what I’m going to do when the time comes for me to be on my own indefinitely,” she said.

Pettit said she plans on attending Hawkeye to earn a degree in criminal justice and police science. “Hopefully by then I can transfer to UNI and study sociology. I want to work in a prison as a correctional counselor, so I need to know how the brain works,” she said.

Petitt said that coursework in college doesn’t worry her much, but instead, growing up in general. She plans on living with her mom after high school to save money before she ventures on her own when she’s ready. Pettit said the thing that worries her the most about legally being an adult is the fact she won’t be able to call her mom when she needs help. She said, “I think it’s scary for me because, for the first time in my whole life, I don’t know what next year is going to look like.”

In five years, Pettit said she hopes to have a few college degrees behind her. If plans go smoothly, she’ll be on her feet maintaining her own home. “If not, that’s OK. I just want to be happy with my own life and not worry financially,” she said.

Pettit said that, thankfully, no classes her senior year have been extremely stressful. She had enrolled in various rigorous coursework such as HCC Business and Law. “Definitely take some college classes because they’re not that bad,” she said. “Also, stand in the student sections and go to class. It’s nice to know you have a community of people around you regardless if you don’t know them personally.”

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