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Taking on High School: The #1 Tip for Success - By Christopher Smith

Taking on High School: The #1 Tip for Success

There are times in our lives when we are presented with difficult choices, the consequences of which will echo into eternity and back. As we pace our dens dimly lit by ever decreasing candlelight, grappling with these existential battles like modern day Edgar Allen Poes, it is not difficult to see why Americans are suffering from premature hair-loss and ulcers at epidemic levels. And though there are certainly some questions worthy of this descent into madness, choosing high school courses should not be one.

Working as a Guidance counselor at Seton for the last 3 years, and as an Admissions counselor for 4 years before that, I have had the opportunity to speak with so many wonderful families, hear their stories, share their concerns. And inevitably, as families see high school on the horizon, terror takes hold. Which diploma option should my student strive for? Should my children be taking Algebra 2 in 5th grade so they can take Calculus 3 as sophomores?

Granted, these are serious questions, and there are many important things to take into account when navigating the waters of high school. But the very fact your child has made it to high school is a testament to both parent and student. Give yourselves a much deserved pat on the back! But if you finish that and find these high school questions still nagging you, give us a call.

Year after year, we have seen that the parents and students who make frequent use of the counseling services at Seton are the most successful. I am sure there are a number of reasons for this, but one is that it’s just helpful to have somebody else to talk through ideas and questions. So much of the stress that families experience stems from feeling like they are alone on an island, parents and students alike. This sense of isolation sometimes makes it even more difficult to reach out for help. Those are the moments that it is more critical than ever to make use of the counseling provided by Seton.

Remember that we are here to help families tackle high school and beyond. My hope in these columns is to address general topics that regularly arise in the Guidance department and to provide a supplement to your calls and emails, whether about choosing high school courses, applying to college, internships, scholarships, etc. If there are topics you wish to see addressed that you think may be helpful to other families, feel free to email me at csmith@setonhome.org or give me a call at 540-636-2238.

About Christopher Smith

Christopher Smith

Chris Smith is the Director of Guidance at Seton. He has an M.A. in National Security and Statecraft from the Institute of World Politics in Washington D.C. He has a B.A. in Philosophy from Christendom College.

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