Passey Reflects Fondly on Her “Cinnaminson Experience”



Emma Passey had a wonderful experience during her four years at CHS.

Emma Passey, Editor-in-Chief

*Advisor’s Note – Reprinted from the June 2017 printed edition

For the past 18 years of our lives, we have been told what to do every second of the day. We are told when to think, when to eat, when to go to the bathroom, and when we can finally leave after six long hours of being monitored constantly. It is not until we leave this sort of safe haven that we realize just how sheltered we have become, and how different life is when the 12th period bell rings for the last time at 2:11 on the last day of classes.

Four years. When you enter high school, Four years feels like an eternity; it seems like those years will never end. Days filled with essays, tests, quizzes, presentations, classwork seem to be endless until they are not. I can’t count the amount of times I wished away these days. These days that seemed so meaningless and almost monotonous are the days that we will miss the comfort of having the most.

I walked into Cinnaminson High School a much different person than I am leaving it. My freshman year was easily the year that was the hardest for me; I had to learn what it felt like to not be able to get a 100 on every test, amongst aspects of my personal life that made it extremely dif- ficult to acclimate. When I walked into CHS on the fi rst day that was only for freshmen, I was not overwhelmed at all. Then the day after came, when all of the upperclassmen joined in, and I found myself walking the halls with guys with full-grown beards that looked like they could be ten years older than me.

Freshman year was also the time that I both lost and gained some of my best friends. I have no one to thank besides DMo (Mr. Moore) and JV soccer, because we all seemed to bond because of our hatred of the 4-3-2-1 run. Over the year, I developed a close circle filled with both friends that I have had my whole life and new friends that became integral parts of my life very quickly.

In all honesty, sophomore year and junior year became a blur in the back of my mind. I realized how hard I needed to try in those two years to make up for a year of slacking off, which translated into long nights doing mountains of homework until it felt like my eyes were going to fall out of my head. I don’t think I have ever read as much in my life as I did in those two years; but I also know that I learned the importance of a work ethic and time management (which I still struggle with, procrastination is real).

Senior year has been the weirdest mix of being extremely stressed out for two week periods and then not doing any work at all for months on end. The college selection and application process was nothing short of stressful, finishing with me changing my college choice three times within two months. On senior trip, chaperones make it seem like the worst thing you can do is be late when in reality, sometimes those memories become the best ones. I am not going to sit here and tell whoever is reading this that the past four years have been the best years of my life- they have been far from that. And I hope for you that these four years are not the best of your life and that you go on to do something bigger and better in the four years to come, and the four years after that, and so on and so forth.

However, one has to go through these formative years in order to learn what type of person they want to become, what their interests are, and what they are ultimately looking for in life after this sheltered bubble we have become so accustomed to being a part of.

To incoming freshmen and underclassmen continuing at Cinnaminson High School: the second semester just came to a close. You think you have a good grasp of the school and what high school is really like and chances are, you do. But I feel that it’s my job as a graduating senior to tell you about things that you may not realize yet. When you’re a senior, you start to realize that different school functions are your last one. Your last homecoming game, last time we play Delran in soccer, last Mr. Cinnaminson, last time watching playoff games as a student. Go to everything. Be a part of as many activities and events as you can. Because once you become a senior, you gain perspective of how
many nights you stayed in watching TV rather than going to the basketball game with your friends. Go out. Go be a part of the social aspect of high school. Everyone associates a negative stigma with going out on Friday and Saturday nights, but what they forget is that often times these weekend nights become the most memorable. Whether you’re in a group that goes to parties every weekend or not, you will find where you fit in and what you like to do and who you like to do it with on the weekends. Those sleepovers with all of your friends that you’ve had since middle school, or the parties with a good percentage of your grade and the other classes around you, all become memories that you’ll wish you had more of.

Don’t shy away from being friends with upper/lower classmen or someone of the opposite gender. Despite common opinion, it’s not weird to be best friends with a senior when you’re a sophomore, or vice versa. I was one of those people who thought it was weird to be so close with someone three years younger than you until I became best friends with a freshman at the end of my junior year. Don’t let people’s opinions stop you from doing what you want to do. If you want to join Physics Olympics, join it. If you want to join the bowling team, be the best bowler there is. You have four years to figure out what you enjoy before you go to college, so take advantage of them. Get a group of your friends to join something that one of you has interest in, that’s how you expand your circle. Although it seems like your parents harping on your grades is a burden on you when you’re a freshman, sophomore and a junior,
one day you’ll thank them. Chances are that it’ll be the day that you start applying for colleges and you realize that straight A’s will open so many more doors for you than straight C’s. Also, don’t stress if you have a rough week, semester, or even entire year. It happens to the best of us. Trust me, two words still ring out in my mind: honors geometry.

Have fun with your friends. Hang out with your family, especially your siblings. Try hard in school; no, it doesn’t look lame or nerdy to be in all honors classes and do well in them. Go to the dances, cheer on your friends at sports events, and don’t stress about college until it becomes time for that. Odds are that the college you envision yourself at your freshman year won’t be the school you end up at, so relax and trust that where you’ll end up is where you’re meant to be. I will never forget the countless study halls and free periods I spent sitting in Mrs. Carroll or Mrs. Hyland’s rooms, talking about everything and anything without it ever becoming monotonous. I will never ever forget spending over 500 days 12th period with Mr. Iacono and the rest of the yearbook club stressing about the yearbook, and listening to his generational rants that happened at leastevery few days. I will never forget the seemingly pointless amount of stress that we had during the weeks leading up to and the actual Spirit Week and the Haunted Walk.

As much as I wished away my years here, I would not be the person that I am so proud to have become without this place. With that said, I hope I look back on my next four years at Rutgers New Brunswick and have the same realization. I am proud to say that I have spent my high school years in Cinnaminson,
even if we didn’t have ceilings during half of the time I was here.

*Advisor’s Note – story originally run in June 2017 printed edition of newspaper.  PDF version can be found here –