During this difficult time, it is easy to get caught up in all the negative. Students are out of school, sports are cancelled, rites of passage are not happening. Not fun. I meet with high school students every day—over Zoom. It is hard not to sit in the same room with these students who mean so much to me. There are some I have only seen in a box on my computer. I miss the meetings in person—we had more time, there was more chit chat and more laughs. It was fun. Sometimes it wasn’t fun, but it was necessary—we had more time, there was more honesty and some tears. I miss my students. I miss myself as a professional and as a counselor. Ugh.
Okay. So, now for the good stuff. To date, the Class of 2021 has already earned over $2 million in college scholarships and been admitted to 30 different colleges—and they are just getting started. Maybe more importantly, the students I am working with are doing some amazing things from the comfort of their own homes.
· Working part-time at restaurants, coffee shops, retail stores, and family businesses.
· Participating in and conducting meaningful research virtually.
· Caring for elderly family members and younger siblings.
· Reading more than ever.
· Writing articles for major news outlets and writing poetry in a notebook.
· Creating and growing student organizations.
· Teaching physical education to neighborhood elementary school kids.
· Working to increase civic knowledge and engagement of high school students.
· Creating amazing art.
· Working out and practicing sports virtually.
· Learning how to cook, play a new instrument, replace a transmission, and build a computer.
· Teaching religious education classes virtually.
There are a lot of other cool things my students are doing—these are just a few examples. Let’s celebrate these things that are happening that are new, different, and life-giving. This is the good stuff and these kids (all our kids) are going to get through this. They are amazing and we can learn so much from them. If you haven’t talked to a teenager lately, I highly recommend it!