High school can be a challenging and confusing time. However, with the right strategies, it can be an opportunity to explore your interests, develop skills for life, and find your community. We spoke to three BETA Camp alumni to get their take on what they wish they knew when they started their high school career.
High school can be a challenging and confusing time. However, with the right strategies, it can be an opportunity to unlock your potential and prepare for college. A high school education offers students the opportunity to explore their interests, develop skills for life, and establish connections with others. The breadth of a high school education goes beyond the scope of academic exploration, as it also provides students with the opportunity to learn skills to succeed in life.
We spoke to three BETA Camp alumni to get their take on what they wish they knew when they started their high school career. Their advice ranged from getting started early, to what qualities you should pursue in friendships.
High School Tips: You Are Never Too Young
High school is an important time in a student’s life. It’s a time when students are learning, growing, and preparing for college and the future. But it can be overwhelming and intimidating to think about college when you’re still in high school. It’s easy to feel like you’re too young to make any real progress towards your college dream.
However, the truth is that you’re never too young to start preparing for college, and life after high school. It’s important to take advantage of the opportunities provided by your high school—from extracurricular activities to classes—to start building the skills and knowledge you’ll need in the future.
This is the advice BETA Camp alum, Peyton Verhoeven, wished she had received when she started high school. "You are not too young to start gaining 'real world' experiences and don’t need a degree or wait a couple years to get started on something you love."
It is also important to explore opportunities outside your high school from an early age. For example, Peyton built the Discovery Crate while still in high school. Discovery Crate supports local ethnic food stores by purchasing their products and packaging them into monthly international themed snack boxes and delivering them right to customers' doors.
Real-life experiences like that can be obtained at any age, and helped Peyton explore her love for startups alongside providing support to those in need.
High School Tips: Focus on Development
Put your heart and soul into anything you do, so that you can grow and develop. This is the advice that Fathima Shaikh, another BETA Camp alum, shares as the key piece of advice she wished she knew. "Anything that you spend time and effort in, from an activity to a conversation, should focus on developing your mindset in some way," she writes.
This is a mistake that is often made at high-school, where interests and sports are pursued based on what some believe will look good on college applications. "People, especially high schoolers, will do activities or spend time in organizations where they are doing work that isn’t inspiring or invigorating simply because it’ll look good on a college app or resume. They are putting themselves in positions to remain stagnant."
Fatima suggests doing the opposite: "Doing something that advances your mindset and outlook on life are way better ways to spend your time and keep you constantly learning and pushing yourself to be the best."
Fatima advanced her mindset by joining BETA Camp, where she built DiverZe, to help increase representation of diverse individuals in influencer marketing strategies.
High School Tips: Productivity is King
Eva Amin, an alum of BETA Camp, provides helpful advice on how to succeed in high school. She emphasizes that small steps taken consistently will add up to big success in the long run. "10 minutes of work is more productive than 5 hours of stressing over it" she writes.
She provides other practical pieces of advice, such as making a to-do list, and focusing on taking classes and extracurricular activities you genuinely enjoy, instead of focussing on what you think will look good for college applications. To increase productivity, prioritization, goal-setting and finding a routine is described as key.
Eva also views emotional control and supportive friendships as great tools in a successful high career. "Don’t feel like you have to have 10000 friends. 2 good friends is better than 10 low quality friends."
High School Tips: Final Thoughts
High school is a critical time for students to explore their interests and build skills for life. We hope that the advice from our BETA Camp alumni will help equip you with the strategies needed to make the most out of your high school experience. With the right mindset and resources, you can unlock your potential and be ready for college and beyond. If you’re looking for more guidance on how to make the most of high school, check out our BETA Camp programs and join us in unlocking your potential!