The Prowler

The student news site of Carolina Forest High School

The Prowler

The student news site of Carolina Forest High School

The Prowler

The student news site of Carolina Forest High School


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Silver Streams Submissions
The Silver Streams will be updated frequently and will highlight our students’ art and writing talent. In the link below, you may submit any artwork, photography, writings, and/or music that you would like to be featured in the our on-line literary magazine.
Note: If you would like your piece formatted a certain way, you may also provide a hard copy to Ms. Twigg’s room in Tech 3.
Submit your entries to the following:  [email protected], [email protected], OR complete the Google Form
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Meet the Staff
Audrey Austin
Audrey Austin
Staff Writer/ Media Producer

Hi! My name is Audrey Austin! I am a senior at CFHS, and this is my first year on The Prowler. I am a member of NEHS, SNHS, our school's lacrosse team, and a Teacher Cadet. I enjoy things like reading,...

To Freshmen, From a Senior: How to Fit In


High school is a scary place full of twists and turns. High school means dealing with hormonal changes and the odd necessity of trying to fit in with others. I was a freshman once, as every senior was. It’s a different experience for everyone.

For me, I was timid and scared, lacking a passion and only wanting to go home the moment I stepped into the school’s corridors. I’m sure many freshmen currently feel the same existential dread, too; and this, in turn, creates a lack of priority in a system that the student may already hate, fueled by the closed-mindedness of first impressions.

In other words, many freshmen connect dread, boredom, paranoia, and sadness to high school due to previous experiences in middle school. This creates a sense of passive isolationism towards new events, such as talking to teachers, joining clubs, enjoying extracurriculars and making new friends rather than sticking to a small circle of friends.

A common misconception from a freshman is: that high school is a prison, a place worth the antagonization. The moral compass of antagonism slowly creates a depressing surrounding on school grounds and limits the person from truly unlocking their potential, whether that is skillfully, mentally, communicatively, morally or physically.

I once thought high school was a prison and me the prisoner. This mentality is a flawed one. It all originates from the concept of fear.

The strongest, most natural emotion is fear. The fear of the unknown, as author H.P. Lovecraft emphasized, is the strongest version of such. When a new freshman opens the door to high school for the first time, fear is the victor of every other emotion, subconsciously or actively. Some may deny that fact, which is expected; however, the nature of every living thing has normalized the concept of being afraid of new experiences because: they’re new.

This fear, believe it or not, can be destroyed by having the mentality of just doing it. Fear is inevitable and that is okay, so why not just have some fun with it? Talk to that interesting person. Talk to your teachers. Enjoy the new environment that is completely different from the arguably more gray surroundings of middle school terrain. The best way to destroy fear is to conquer it.

Another common version of fear is not wanting to feel embarrassed. “What if I make a fool out of myself? What if I mess up?”

Let’s take a more nihilistic and realistic approach: no one will remember that small intricate mistake in a few months– maybe even a few days or weeks– from now. Some people might laugh at you during the moment because people like to take comfort in the humiliation of others. Once the comfort is gone, so is the memory of the incident.

I’ve done embarrassing things as a freshman, as everyone has and should. Maybe I tripped and fell in front of everyone. Maybe I wasn’t as athletic as the other kids in gym class. Yet, despite the plethora of embarrassing incidents, it was never mentioned 24 hours after the event.

Of course, no form of fear is an excuse to be rude and sabotage others. Negative and deliberate actions against others will be remembered. 

The difference between humiliating yourself and humiliating others is the deliberate portion of both scenarios. Your embarrassment is nothing more than an accident; however, going out of your way to attack and negatively impact others is a planned, processed, and focused form of conscious action.

People– including you– will remember the act of malice from another person, learning to avoid or dislike that person.

The best way to fit in with others is: to not. Do not be the one to yearn for comfort by embarrassing others; in fact, yearn to take risks. Every day introduces a new risk to take, and with high school being four years of developmental growth, each risk creates a path that could introduce you to your characteristic passion. 

Staying in your comfort zone is exactly that: staying in a closed area for extended periods. That sounds like a prison. Sure, some risks may bring embarrassment, but if you were to look back at yourself a few years from now, you would laugh at yourself for making such a big deal out of something so universally minimal.

The point of high school and growing as a person is to make mistakes. Without mistakes, there is no reason for pursuing yourself to grow. In simpler terms, life has no meaning if there is no room for growth. We’d all be the same person, a hive mind and nothing more.

So, normalize making mistakes and remember that you are not the only person who can make them. The fear of “messing up” is the ultimate blueprint for the “high school is a prison” mentality because you are locking yourself up behind the bars of paranoid thoughts. Let go and taste freedom.

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