High school is meant to be a key time for self-searching and exploration: a place where anyone can discover, deepen and pursue passions and talents. A place where we can find the kind of person we want to become. But oftentimes when the pressures of grades and college résumés begin to creep in, we can get distracted from enjoying highschool as we create an immense amount of stress surrounding the future. However I, along with every member of the Class of ‘23, have been given an object to help ground us and remind us to live in the moment. An object that we were all told to keep close to us until we graduate from Masters.
At the beginning of my freshman year in my first ever class meeting, I watched as the concept of legacy stones were introduced by our class dean, Matthew Kammrath. He held up a box of rocks, all roughly the same shape and size with the word “Legacy” in black letters imprinted on each one. He explained to us that it is incredibly important to appreciate our high school experience, even when it becomes stressful. It’s easy to get swept away in a mentality of just wanting to make it to college, but there is more to high school than just trying to get it over with to move onto the next chapter of your life. We were all told to take a rock and keep it with us until graduation, and if we did that, we would get a mystery prize. As everyone in that class meeting took a stone, Kammrath left us with a question that we all should carry with us: what legacy will you leave at Masters and beyond?
My legacy stone sits on my desk at home, and every time I look at it, I am reminded of this question. I see it as a symbol of motivation and drive and a reminder to always work on becoming my best self; to be a power for good. And now I constantly find myself asking, when I leave Masters after four years of my life, how do I want to be remembered?
Needless to say, this stone has had a great impact on how I view high school. But recently, I discovered that this is not a tradition that has been implemented annually at Masters, but rather a tradition was only established in the class of ‘23. I thought this was strange, since in my view, this tradition embodies the essence of Masters. The stone is worth more than a mystery prize at the end of our high school career: it is a reminder to approach everything we do with our might and work towards becoming a power for good in the community, two things Masters heavily encourages. It is a perfect, timeless and easily maintainable tradition to incorporate into every future class. As I mentioned before, it enforces the idea that there is more to life and more to high school than working to get accepted into college. And at a school like Masters that presents students with every opportunity to find themselves and their passions, we have to take advantage of those opportunities and never take them for granted.
My legacy stone gave me a new positive outlook on school, and I want that for every student here. This should be a tradition Masters takes pride in and establishes annually, like ringing the liberty bell when getting into college or senior speeches. But even if the tradition isn’t implemented, we should all keep the question “What legacy will you leave at Masters and beyond? ” in our minds as we continue our high school journey.