Everybody has different expectations for how high school goes. The shows and movies we watched growing up put these unrealistic expectations into our heads and we hope that is how high school will be like. We see these stereotypes all the time in school. We see groups of athletes, band, choir, theatre and club students in friend groups and everyone has their own cliques.

Being in The Blue and Gold was such an unexpected opportunity that fell into my life. I remember walking into the newsroom for the first time. Not knowing anybody there and trying to not make a scene as our class advisor was talking to the class. I expected the class to be something I had to do for that year and not come back to. I didn't expect to love the class as much as I do now. It was hard at first to work with so many people I didn’t know but, I was able to find myself bonding with the other freshman reporters who I can now say are also my Editor-in -Chiefs. If I was not part of Blue and Gold my freshman year, I would not have accomplished very much throughout my high school career.

My one goal for high school was to have confidence. That was what I strived for every year. I started as a reporter, like many others before me, and looked up to the upperclassmen working cohesively together. My freshman class consisted of almost 40 students in one room. It was chaotic and loud but I was able to see people from all cliques work together to produce something amazing. I never would have imagined myself being in The Blue and Gold if I did not switch classes freshman year.

Something I have learned throughout the years is that Blue and Gold was also a safe place. As a class that had to cover many different stories we often found ourselves discussing bigger issues as well. The class was a place where everyone had a voice, whether they wanted to share or not. Being able to express ourselves emotionally, not just artistically, has helped us realize that our community is bigger than we imagined.

The opportunities that being in The Blue and Gold have given me are once in a lifetime. I met amazing and talented people I can call my close friends. I've had opportunities to experience and report many events in Malden that made me feel closer to my community. I work alongside some of the most talented news staff to create a newspaper that holds years of traditions. 

This chapter of my life doesn't end at Malden High. This is just the place where it began and I know the lessons I've learned will follow me to my future path in life. 

Growing up is scary. We all envision millions of possible futures but what you do depends on yourself. I have been uncertain almost all my life of what I wanted to do. There were just too many possibilities and not enough years in a life span. I came to the conclusion that you don't really need to choose. It's definitely cheesy but you can be anything you want to be as long as you try. 

I wish the best of luck to the Class of 2021. We are all moving on and taking the next steps to adulthood. The world changes everyday but people dont change, they grow up. This has been an interesting four years and though it felt like it would never end, the time has come to say goodbye. My experiences here will only help me grow to be a better version of myself so thank you to all the people that have made that possible.

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