Interviewing the 2022 Grads

Every year, it feels almost eerie walking in the halls in the first weeks of school. The people that you are used to seeing since your very first day at the school are suddenly just not there, and as you look around you realize that you don’t recognize many of the other students from the grade levels below. This of course is only more so the case as a senior when every grade above you has now graduated and the grade directly above you has now left as well. It really just marks a major point in your life in realizing how close you are to finishing high school and the limited amount of time you have left at home. In this way, it is sort of depressing. But at the same time, it is also really exciting as well as you think about all the opportunities that you will have and the college life to come. Starting the next chapter of your life is an exciting opportunity as you can become whoever you want to be. Yet, it is also a frightening prospect as you realize that depending on where you go, you may have to find an entirely new group of friends and discover your place on that campus. In order to address some of these fears, I interviewed the class of 2022 asking them:


“What is the biggest thing that you miss about Academic Magnet and how would you say college has been so far?” 


William Hyatt (UCLA): What I miss most about Magnet is sports. Not only because I miss competing and the team camaraderie, but also because I miss my friends. We all played sports together so practice was just another few hours of hanging out after class. My college experience has been great. Once you develop immunity to frat flu and are no longer sick it’s awesome. You can party any night of the week, the weather in LA is great, and there’s a ton to do. We also have #1 campus dining so I’m well fed.


Harman Pilia (University of Southern California): Okay what I miss about magnet was the ease of all the classes. They say that magnet prepares you for college, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. University life is hard, very fast paced. The one thing that is very different outside of academics is who you associate with. You will probably end up having like 4-5 different friend groups that have no idea that your other friend group exists, which feels normal in high school since your friends outside of school never really interact with the ones in school. But, in uni, you could be with some friends and cross your other friends and it becomes sort of weird in a way with how to handle that. Please spend your summer studying what classes you’ll take or you will be destroyed by college- just my personal experience. And everyone is more accomplished than you which is a double edged sword.


Cole Wilson (Clemson): I miss spirit week. College is great, the freedom is nice.


Izzy Custer (FSU): I would say the thing I miss most about Magnet would be seeing my friends everyday and having a set routine that forced me to be productive and get my work done. Still, my college experience has been so fun and I am so glad that I branched out and went to a school where I didn’t know anyone so that I could meet so many new people and experience a new environment. Magnet definitely prepared me very well for college and I am so glad to have spent my four years there!!


Marshall Fleming (Wofford): I definitely miss the teachers at magnet the most. And college is great.


Ashley Windham (USC): The thing that I miss the most about magnet is the routine I had. I always dreaded waking up at 7 am to go to school, but I honestly appreciate it more now that I’m in college. The whole wake up, go to school, go to practice, go home routine really kept me a lot less stressed believe it or not. It’s a lot harder to create that routine in college. My college experience has been good so far. There’s always something going on so you’re never left with a night of nothing to do. There isn’t as much busywork in college as there was at Magnet but there is a lot more studying.

And you have a TON of free time.

— Ashley Windham


All that free time was the weirdest part because you don’t really know what to do with yourself, but after I get all my work and studying done, I’ll just go to the gym or for a walk or get to hang out with my friends. It really is just like one giant sleepover all the time.


Grace Ray (Virginia Tech): The thing I miss most about magnet is the community. It’s really fun going to a large school with thousands of people but I didn’t realize how much I appreciated having close relationships with the students and faculty at Magnet until I left. Although I didn’t know each person individually, it was comforting to have a community within Magnet that all wanted to support you. College is fun! It’s exciting being in a new environment with new people. It’s a really shocking growing experience, but challenges you in the best ways. If you are thinking of going to Virginia Tech let me know!! We have really good food and basketball I think. Go Hokies! 


Camille Molten (USC): College is so fun and easier than magnet. The thing I miss most about Magnet is Mr. Cosgrove. And the class of 2023 ofc 🙄.


Sam Whelan (University of Richmond): My college experience has been awesome so far. I love the school, I’m surrounded by a lot of good people, and it’s a really fun time because something’s always happening. I’d say what I miss most about Magnet is the people and the connections I made with them.




Francis Drake (Notre Dame): What I miss most about magnet would be the people — the student body is so special and the teachers are really passionate about what they’re doing. As for college, I love it here! It’s definitely more work than I expected coming from magnet but I really like what I’m majoring in—it’s definitely not what I expected but in the best way possible!


Brett Cox (UVA): The thing I miss most about magnet is definitely the classroom environment. No matter what class it was, you almost always had a few friends in your class, knew everyone, and were pretty close with the teacher. Now, half of my classes are massive lectures where you barely know anyone, and know the TA, who usually doesn’t care, instead of the teacher. It also seemed like there were always a few classes that weren’t as serious and pretty much breaks where you could just hang out with friends or play games. College experience has definitely been good so far. I had Strep Throat during finals week and our IM dodgeball team just lost in the finals which obviously isn’t ideal, but the rest has been pretty great. Personally, class-wise I don’t think it’s as big a step up as most high school teachers make it seem, and most of the adjustment comes from just being able to live away from home. There’s also a lot of social pressure which is nice sometimes, but rough others. Every day at any time there’s pretty much always something going on. This is great for meeting new friends and having fun, but don’t be afraid to miss out on this stuff when classes start to get tough. Overall definitely very different from high school, but it’s been fun and seems like it only goes up from here. 


Mary Lide Wallace (USC): I definitely miss the atmosphere. Most of the relations I had with some of the teachers felt so close senior year that it made it very special and comforting.  Also, probably just hanging out in the parking lot after school and the senior lounge with my friends are some memories that I’ll carry with me for a long time. My college experience has been great. I was lucky enough to end up at USC along with all my Magnet best friends so we have continued to stay close all while branching out and meeting different groups of people. My senior year at magnet was one I’ll remember.