by Loughlin Pagnucci of Indiana Area High School
This school year has been very hectic for everyone. As a student, I know that it is challenging to work hard in an environment that changes so much, from working online to back in the classroom. However, The Challenge Program and its five award categories have helped me stay on track.
By working on attendance, I have been able to ensure that I attended every class every day, no matter where it is. While this school year is difficult, it is still important to show up every day and give it your all. It is impossible to do better if you never show up.
STEM is the award category thathas helped me to keep working hard in the classes that could be more challenging. These are the classes that would be the easiest to not work hard in, as they are hard and may seem like it just is not worth it. However, it is still important to work hard in the classes that are the most important and difficult. Character is built by working hard when it is the hardest to work.
Community service is more essential now than ever, as the pandemic has proved. There are many people that are struggling to make ends meet, as they are out of a job because of the pandemic. These people need support so that they can get back on their feet and come out of this stronger than ever. Helping those in need is a crucial activity, because for everyone that is struggling, there would be a lot more people struggling if nobody ever helped out.
Academic improvement is necessary in this wild experience. This is the time to step up and prove that no matter how hard this year gets, you can always do better. If you are going to prove to yourself that you can do better than you did before, this is the year for you to do it. Whether it is doing better than you did on the last test, or the last semester, or last year, just improve. And that leads to academic excellence.
Academic excellence is important this year for many reasons, but the biggest one is that it proves to everyone, your teachers, your parents, and you, that you can rise up to the challenges of this year, not only meet them head on, but dominate. It is important that you do well in a year full of difficulties like this one. If you are going to do well in anything, do it right here right now. Excellence in the classroom is something that you should want to achieve every year, but this year it is different.
This is the year where you might think about how hard it is, and how it is not worth it. However, when you are faced with moments of doubt in yourself, it becomes time to step up and show that nothing that can be thrown your way can stop you. Using these five award categories and the idea of attendance, STEM, community service, academic improvement, and academic excellence, facing this year should not be a problem to be feared, but an opportunity to embrace and thrive in.