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 Jayden Szewc, 18, just graduated from Holly High School. She plans to attend Honors College at Oakland University this fall. She likes living in Michigan and plans to stay, but could see herself living in North Carolina or South Carolina.

What is the best thing about your mom/dad?

The best thing about my mom and dad is their dedication to trying and doing their best to support my sister and me in all the different paths of life we take. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today and would not have the same opportunities that I have been presented with. 

Would you rather live a week in the past or the future?

I would rather live a week in the future because one cannot change the past. But if I traveled into the future I could determine if I like what the future will hold, and if not I can change the present to mold the future. 

What living person, other than a family member, do you most admire?

One living person, other than a family member, that I admire most is entertainer Priyanka Chopra. I admire her most because of her resilience, dedication and aspirations in life. 

How do you think school is different today than it was for your parents?

I think school is very different today than it was for my parents. Today, school can be more challenging and stressful, and the information about each subject is constantly changing, altering the information and ideas teachers must cover. 

Do you think it’s harder to be a teen today than it used to be?

I think it is more challenging to be a teen today than it used to be. In the world today, new topics, challenges, and conflicts around the world alter the environment teens are exposed to. In addition, I believe there is more pressure put on teens to be perfect and to have their life figured out. 

What have you learned from your grandparents?

My grandparents have taught me that life has a way of working itself out. In addition, they have taught me how it’s okay to not have everything figured out, and that you should live your life with as little regret as possible, because time is not a guarantee. 

What advice do you have for any younger siblings entering high school?

To start, high school is not as scary as everyone makes it sound. Freshman year is full of new people, a new school, and the eager anticipation to just be a sophomore. Sophomore year is the year everyone starts to drive and is probably the most non-stressful year in high school.

 Junior year is rough, but do not get discouraged. The SAT and state testing will be hard, but it’s all worth it in the end. Lastly, senior year is full of lasts, and decision-making that can really be stressful. Overall, high school is four years of discovery, hard work, new experiences. It goes by super fast, so enjoy it.

What do you wish your school would teach that is not currently being taught?

I wish that schools would have a class that teaches important life skills that students can use in their future. Topics such as applying for loans or writing a check would be very helpful for students, especially ones planning to attend college. As a senior myself, there is a lot more for me to learn.

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