With the start of the 2023-24 school year, seniors at Helix Charter High School are taking their final year of classes and activities on campus. As such, several Helix seniors were asked about their thoughts on this school year and what they look forward to achieving.
We’ve spoken with Ocean Smith, Rhys McIlroy, Tori Guerin, Brayden Bibb and Brooke Skellrod.
no mesa courier: How excited are you to go back to school one last time in Helix?
Ocean Smith: Sure, I’m as excited to start my final term at Helix as any student, but the thought of the last first time scares me. I’m so excited about creating new memories, meeting new people and getting new lessons, I feel ready to let go of the Helix and move on with life. Helix has helped me feel confident about the future and going back will help me prepare for that journey.
Rhys McIlroy: I’m so excited, it seems like it’s been a very short time here at Helix and I’m ready to see what happens next.
Tori Guerin: I’m so excited to be back in school but it’s definitely bittersweet because it’s the last time. I had so much fun at Helix and met some great people there so I will definitely miss that when I’m gone.
Brayden Babb: I am so excited but also a little sad. I feel like we missed our first year due to the pandemic and I wish we had another year of hanging out with friends and bonding.
Brock Sculrod: I am so excited to start the school year but also so sad because it will be the last year with all my friends.
Liquidity Management Center: What are some goals you want to achieve in your final year?
Smith: In my senior year at Helix, my biggest goal was to create a plan that would lead me to a successful future, by applying to colleges and receiving acceptance letters. While this is my main goal for the year like the majority of students my age, there are still many smaller goals that I am preparing myself to achieve this year. First of all, as a Helix University swimmer, one of my goals is to work hard on my mental and physical health in order to give me the strength to be as fast as I can be in the water. In my senior year, I also want to focus on making sure I continue to push myself academically. I want to prove to myself that I have effective testing skills by receiving an AP Scholar Award for demonstrating my dedication to learning and understanding.
McElroy: I want to apply to colleges this fall, and hope to be accepted into a four-year university before graduating in June. But much more importantly, I want to spend my senior year with all my friends who are finishing high school and doing all the alumni classics.
Guerin: Of course I have a lot of academic goals such as wanting all A’s and wanting to apply early to colleges but my overall goal for my senior year is just to have fun. I want to make new friends, join new clubs, and try things I’ve never tried before. I want to make the most of my final year of high school.
Papi: I want to qualify for the National Public Speaking and Debating Championships one last time.
sclerod: My main goals are to finish my high school career strong and have as much fun as possible!
Liquidity Management Center: What are some memories you have so far of your time at Helix?
Smith: One of my favorite memories was when everyone went back to school at the end of my freshman year. Times have not been normal due to the coronavirus, and seeing and meeting people has allowed me to not only feel as if I was really in high school, but also to connect with the people who are now some of my closest friends. The next year, I remember going to my first high school dance and the excitement I got when I got dressed up in fancy clothes with my friends. My first homecoming is where I made the best memories in high school and it all happened at Helix.
McElroy: My favorite Helix memory was during the last two months of my freshman year, when we were invited back to campus part-time. Everyone was so energetic and excited to see each other. I met some of my closest friends and made great memories during a very rough time.
Guerin: The best memories I have of Helix come from two of the activities I participate in which are basketball and speech and debate. Both activities have helped me meet some amazing people and make amazing memories. If I had to pick just one memory spiral that was my favorite, I’d pick the time when I could manage the homecoming halftime show. It was great to be in front of all these people, the energy was amazing, and it was so nice to announce that the King and Queen are home.
Papi: Certainly formal and spiritual winter days. As well as going out of town to participate in public speaking and debate tournaments.
sclerod: Some of my favorite memories from my time at Helix include sporting events, extracurricular activities, spirit weeks, and meeting new people.
Liquidity Management Center: What are your plans after Helix?
Smith: After Helix, I plan to go to college and study medical science. I’m not entirely sure what career I want, but I do know that I’m interested in fields of medicine. Besides school, I also plan to continue swimming. In high school, I was on the college swim team, and this allowed me to not only improve my skills in the water, but also helped me become a more outgoing person and part of the community. It would be great to be on the varsity swim team, but if not, I want to make sure the pool is always available to me so I can continue to improve my swimming skills and help me find shelter.
McElroy: After Helix, I would like to attend a four-year university to double major in Business or Economics and American Sign Language (ASL) or ASL Interpretation. After graduation, I hope to get a master’s degree in finance with the ultimate goal of becoming a personal financial planner and possibly a certified ASL interpreter.
Guerin: My plans after Helix are to go to college and major in engineering. As of now, I’m interested in space, but I’m thinking about mechanics so I can learn about a broader range of things.
Papi: I want to go to college and major in psychology. I also want to continue working to find sustainable solutions to homelessness in San Diego County.
sclerod: I plan to continue my studies in a 4-year university and get a degree in psychology or business law.