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Got senioritis? Don't worry, it'll only last another four weeks

May 07, 2002|BY KIM DEBARGE

I have what some people might term a disorder. Each morning, I wait until the last possible second to get out of bed. I can't keep my eyes open for morning classes.

Particularly prone to skipping school, I also fail to bring books home and study for my upcoming AP exams. To top it all off, high school is barely a memory if I'm not physically in the building. I spend more time thinking about living at UMBC in the fall, and my summertime social schedule, than I spend thinking about how I'll pay for it all. I suffer from senioritis.

Every spring, high school seniors across the country are affected by a condition jokingly referred to as "senioritis." As kids get ready to leave high school for college and the work force, the worries of high school seem a distant memory - even if graduation hasn't happened.

Thoughts become focused on the "real world" and living real life. Especially real life without parents.

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"Partly," says Boonsboro high senior Deidre Fulks, "it's because you're ready for the next phase in your life, so you try to rush this one."

Fulks is going to live on campus at the University of Maryland, College Park in the fall. She says, "Senioritis is very real. It is a condition that makes people less motivated to complete their work. Graduation is so close that it doesn't seem important."

On the effects of senioritis, Fulks admits that she has become quite the slacker. "I took a class load this year that I thought I could handle, but I didn't expect to be as unmotivated as I am."

She says that, in effect, kids cut corners in their schoolwork and consequently do things they probably shouldn't be doing in place of it (like cutting class), but somehow the grades work out in the end.

Ariel Bolden is another Boonsboro High senior ready to attend UMBC. "I'm going to live on campus!" she exclaims. "It's going to be awesome, I can't wait." She's not scared, but she is feeling "a little nervous." Of course she's excited, she says.

Bolden, like Fulks, has begun to slack off. "Big time. I was on distinguished Honor Roll three times last year, and Honor Roll once ... but this year, I haven't been on Honor Roll at all. I missed it by about two points last quarter."

She says that she always thought, "I'll never get senioritis. And now I have it ... I have it really badly." Despite this condition, she has no worries about the almost ended school year.

Probable causes of senioritis are the busy year-end schedule, constant graduation rehearsals, prom, summer jobs and college acceptance functions which create the mentality that school is finished.

Between all those commitments and all that playtime, who has time for final exams and homework? Certainly not seniors. Other students have one or more years to work towards completing high school, but seniors have laid the groundwork for themselves and the world has been spread at their feet.

Kim DeBarge is a senior at

Boonsboro High School and an intern at The Herald-Mail.

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