LUDLOW, Vt. – The Class of 2017 will be graduating in less than a month, and many have chosen to share their experiences, plans, and advice with the world, especially the underclassmen. Alex Barton, Bhavin Patel, Mason Staples, Cindy Briggs, and Holly Goodman will be sharing a bit about themselves this week.
Alex Barton has been a very busy human being. She worked every weekend and vacation on Okemo, assembled and edited the yearbook with Holly Goodman and Ms. McCall, library-media specialist at Black River, served as co-president of Interact with Holly Goodman, and as president of the senior class. Alex also helped with the 6th grade class at Ludlow Elementary School for half the year and played varsity soccer, basketball, and softball. Currently, Alex suffers from senioritis, but has overcome every challenge with greater resolve to take on her next adventure. After graduation, she plans to study Elementary Education at High Point University in North Carolina. Her advice to the underclassmen is,
“Don’t procrastinate. The more you procrastinate, the less time you have to enjoy life and the fun experiences are totally worth it.”
Bhavin Patel’s humor has only grown throughout his time at Black River. He’d introduce himself with a simple “Hey, how you doing,” *insert handshake* but as soon as that was over, he’d promptly return to perfecting his favorite pastime — napping. He’s been napping all year and plans to continue to do so after graduation. He admits to suffering from the dreaded senioritis, which seems to have affected him all four years of high school, but looks forward to his time pursuing his passion at the University of Napitude with other like-minded individuals. His only advice for the incoming seniors and underclassmen is to not argue with teachers.
Mason Staples likes to keep it real with Kid Cudi and Pokemon, and isn’t afraid to be himself. This year, he’s proud of his work in his Film, TV, and Society class, where he produces videos on everything from current events to creative and goofy music videos. Outside of school, Mason’s been working full-time at LaValley’s Building Supply, where it is a new experience every day. He recently completed training required to operate a forklift. His advice to the underclassmen is to “do your work and have fun, don’t stress on little childish things, and remember: being weird is being different, and being different sets you apart from the rest.”
Cindy Briggs has been quite busy this year, studying biology, forensic psychology, and the environment. At the River Valley Technical Center, she’s taking Human Services Level II. During the week, Cindy and a friend job shadow and help out at the World of Discovery Daycare Center in Springfield, where she hopes to work after graduation. Cindy plans to continue her education at the Community College of Vermont, starting with some classes in Rutland and Springfield, and deciding later what she is most interested in. To the class of 2018, Cindy warns them to beware of senioritis and to try to find their place and move forward with new responsibilities and bigger dreams. Cindy encourages the underclassmen to take the time to find themselves, even if they feel like they don’t fit in. It’s more than worth it.
Holly Goodman has spent most of her senior year in the art room, and she’s had a phenomenal time exploring her passion, creating art through drawing, painting, sewing, crafting, ceramics, and also mentoring others. After graduation, Holly plans to work at her family’s restaurant, and hopes to intern at the Fletcher Farms Art School, where she will learn and work alongside a small community of art teachers and staff. In the fall, Holly will be attending Green Mountain College in Poultney, where she plans to double major in Art and Education, while also studying sustainability so she can incorporate those ideas into future curriculum to enhance her students’ understanding of and appreciation for the environment. Holly advises underclassmen to stay true to themselves. “Figure out what things are most important to you and make it a priority to do them. It’s your job to create your own happiness; nobody can do it for you. So get out there and do what makes you happy!”
These five seniors have worked hard to earn their knowledge, friendships, and varied experiences. They hope to continue to better themselves and expand their world in the future, with the loving support of their family and friends.