Mustangs Impacted by a Bittersweet Goodbye

As the academic year draws to a close, Mustangs watch as the class of 2023 seniors bid farewell to their high school years. For the classes left behind, this transition comes with mixed emotions as they experience the profound effects of their departing senior friends, siblings and role models. From quieter parking lots to more vacant classrooms, the departure of the seniors has left an undeniable impact on the school community.
“I’ll miss the crowded parking lot…. It is so busy and lively when it’s full and it makes me feel happy for some reason,” sophomore Julian Patterson describes.
One of the first noticeable changes following the seniors’ departure is the transformation of the once hectic parking lots. With the absence of a significant portion of the student body, there is a notable decrease in traffic congestion and an abundance of empty parking spaces. Mustangs in other grades who were previously accustomed to waiting long periods of time to enter and exit the school now find themselves with completely different schedules, which is a small yet tangible reminder of the seniors’ absence.
“Some of my classes have gotten very empty because of the seniors who left and now the work is light in those classes,” junior Soha Siraj said.
Inside the school building, the impact is even more noticeable. Walking through the hallways, one cannot help but notice the silence that now fills the once vibrant atmosphere. Empty classrooms, once filled with noisy discussions and laughter, now echo with a sense of emptiness. For some, these smaller classes are much more preferable, but for others, the absence of these senior voices and their unique perspectives leaves a void that will be felt by many.
“I’m sad to see them go; I knew a lot of them really well because they were my sister and her friends. I think they were a big part of our overall morale and community; we will definitely feel the loss,” sophomore Jaya Shelat shared.
Perhaps one of the most emotional aspects of the seniors’ departure is the farewells said by their younger friends and siblings. For the underclassmen, saying goodbye to their senior mentors and friends can be bittersweet. These bonds, forged over the years, have provided guidance and support, creating a sense of family within the school community. As the seniors leave, the other classes are left to navigate the halls without their role models and have to learn on their own without the advice from their senior friends.
“In Speech and Debate, we have new captains; our old seniors are really doing a lot to debrief the new captains to make sure we have a strong club next year,” Shelat said.
However, amidst the sentimental farewells, the seniors leaving also brings forth opportunities for growth. Mustangs are stepping up to fill the leadership void left by the graduating seniors. Many clubs and sports teams are witnessing a changing of the guard. As younger students assume leadership positions and roles. This shift not only allows students to develop their leadership skills but also creates a platform for new ideas and perspectives to flourish. As the juniors and sophomores embrace their newfound responsibilities, the school community adapts to this evolving landscape.
“I think a lot of people are like, I don’t want to see my seniors go, but for me, I hope they have a really great experience in college, and they do a lot with their future and their life. There’s a lot of ambitious folk, and I hope they do great out there,” junior Darren Wang commented.
While the seniors’ departure undeniably impacts the entire high school community, it also serves as a reminder of the transient nature of our educational journey. The empty parking lots and vacant classrooms symbolize the end of an era, but they also foreshadow new beginnings. Mustangs are left to honor the legacies of their departing senior peers while crafting their own unique paths, forward.
As MRHS bid farewell to the graduating seniors, students celebrate their accomplishments and eagerly anticipate the next chapter in their lives. Their departure leaves an indelible mark on the school community, reminding everybody to cherish the relationships built during high school years.