Advice for New Graduates (and Life)

Advice for New Graduates (and Life)

Hi everyone,

Even though not all of us are graduating right now, I found this article about advise for newly graduates that I believe applies to anyone. We are all moving forward, maybe not with a cap and gown, but definitely to a new place in our lives, a new grade, a new job or even new relationships. Read the advice, and consider the one that applies to you, and remember, you are not alone during this crazy ride.

Whether you put on your cap and gown last week — or last century — these honest answers can give you some insight and guidance.

“If you don’t know what you want to do with the rest of your life, you’re not a failure. Give yourself time and get yourself experience to figure things out.”
— Angela Duckworth (TED Talk: Grit — the power of passion and persistence)

“Although I think I already knew this back when I graduated from college, I didn’t do it enough: trust your instincts. Deep inside you, you already know what you need to do to pursue your goals. And just as importantly, do not seek permission to pursue your goals. Pursue them. Only by doing so can you show the world what you had in mind and get the support of others.”
— Alejandro Sánchez Alvarado (TED Talk: To solve old problems, study new species)

“Don’t take yourself, your decisions, your outcomes or even your mistakes so damn seriously. There’s nowhere special to get to and no special accomplishment to check off the list. The moment is now; the place is here; the person is you. Make choices that make you feel alive. But here’s my advice about my advice — I couldn’t have possibly done this myself when I was a new college graduate because I was Wrapped. Way. Too. Tightly. This would have sounded like loosey-goosey hokum to me, and I’d have rolled my eyes and gone back to alphabetizing my soup shelf. Truly, what I wish I’d done differently during the past 20 years is enjoyed the ride and engaged in less hand-wringing over my decisions. I wish I’d trusted myself more, trusted the universe more, trusted the love and support of family and friends more, and realized this: ‘I’m enough, and it’s all going to be great.’ Because it has been marvelous.”
— Casey Brown (TED Talk: Know your worth, and then ask for it)

“The advice that I wish I’d gotten when I graduated from college is: Pay attention to the difference between the quick hits of excitement that come from that first kiss of a new relationship or job and those feelings you get when you think about your strong connections with family or friends. Don’t get fooled by shiny things — that shine fades over time, while the gold of strong relationships never tarnishes. Remember the differences between these feelings to help you make decisions as you go forward.”
— Judson Brewer (TED Talk: A simple way to break a bad habit)

“Regarding relationships of all categories (platonic, romantic, professional, etc.): Don’t let someone take up your emotional real estate if they aren’t paying rent.”
— Sarah Kay (TED Talk: If I should have a daughter … )

“Give yourself more time. So many college graduates immediately start wanting to make all their dreams come true at once — this can go wrong in many ways. The first is the frustration that you’re not ‘there’ yet. It’s going to take time to find (or build) your dream career. The second is burnout. If you find your career early, you can find yourself setting all sorts of unrealistic goals with arbitrary deadlines and chase them until you drop from fatigue. You can have it all — but not all at once.”
— David Burkus (TED Talk: Why you should know how much your coworkers get paid)

“Surround yourself with people who help you be the best versions of yourself. Avoid those who don’t. And get enough sleep.
Lisa Feldman Barrett (TED Talk: You aren’t at the mercy of your emotions)

“It’s traditional at graduation to offer neat, packaged stories of triumph over difficulties. But life isn’t like that — it’s open-ended, subject to a million contingencies and constant change. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make plans. But it does mean you should be alert to all the changes in the world and in yourself that could render your plan suddenly obsolete, unattractive or perverse. Be open to change. Be prepared to experiment. Take risks. Keep learning. Make your life your own.”
— Margaret Heffernan (TED Talk: Dare to disagree)

“You don’t have to do something extraordinary to lead a meaningful life; you don’t have to cure cancer, become an Instagram celebrity, or write the Great American Novel. Freud said that the meaning of life lies in love and work. So: In your relationships, lead with love. Be generous, be vulnerable, give of yourself to others, and don’t do the expedient thing just because it’s more convenient for you. Make the effort to put others first. In your career, find work that makes you proud and adopt a service mindset — remember how what you’re doing helps others, no matter how big or small the impact may be. Touching the life of just a single person is a powerful legacy to leave behind. Finally, make gratitude a part of your daily life; don’t save it for Thanksgiving. Every day, reflect on one or two things that happened to you which you’re grateful for. Not only will it make you happier, but it will also put you in touch with what really matters. Then, when you experience setbacks or hardships, it will also be a good reminder of how blessed you really are.”
— Emily Esfahani Smith (TED Talk: There’s more to life than being happy)

Rebekah Barnett

Gratitude Journal

Gratitude Journal

Hi everyone,

The last couple of weeks have been strange. Not having school and then having AP exams, I feel like I haven’t been to work in two weeks. And I have to be honest, with so little of school left, I wasn’t sure I was going to be able to “return to work” with a smile on my face. However, this morning, it wasn’t so bad. I even forgot about all my complaining during the weekend.

Yesterday, I read an article about “venting”, which is what we usually do when we are upset. The article explained that venting actually makes you angrier. I think the same could be said about complaining, it has a complete negative effect on us. At the end of the day, we are going to do what we are supposed to do, and we better to it with the right disposition, or we are going to waste our time. This is how I feel about today, the right disposition is helping me write this journal, is helping me complete my last STUCO responsibilities, and is helping me remember about all the things I still want to do or help with, this school year. I’m grateful my morning has been easy going and has helped me get into the flow of things with ease. I’m grateful I get to change my disposition, and have a positive attitude. I know our environment influences how we feel, so right now, my environment is helping my feel just right.

Needless to say, I am thinking about the upcoming summer break, but I came across a quote that is not only perfect for the last STUCO bulletin board of the year, they are also the exact words I need to keep in mind for the next three weeks: “don’t count the days, make the days count” I want to share it with you, because I know some of you are ready to leave, but some of you need these last three weeks to reach your goals. A countdown is not enough motivation to keep going, we need meaning in what we do and need to do. Find your meaning, make the days count! I have mine, and I’m grateful I get to share my meaning every day.

Have an awesome week, remember I’m here for you,

Ms. Gaby Di Muro


Goodbye STUCO!

Goodbye STUCO!

Dear STUCO members,

I want to thank everyone for taking this job, because that is what it is (and what it will be next year for those of you who are coming back), a job. Like any job, for some of you, it was awesome, and some of you wanted to quit, at least once. I want to thank you for not quitting, and for enjoying this job as much as you did.

I want to congratulate you. When I took the job, I had the responsibility to update STUCO, and thanks to everything we did, I think we were able to do it. Events like game night, adopt a book, donating money, our bulletin boards, hosting a stress free picnic, which was one of my favorites, career day, another favorite and the senior breakfast made this STUCO memorable, made YOUR student council memorable.

I would like to share with you some of the best feedback I got about STUCO this year: “this year, I can tell STUCO actually cares” I think this is great feedback because, on a very personal level, that was always my goal, for us to care. I would like for you to learn from this experience that you can reach whatever goal you want to reach if you care about what you are doing, don’t do things just because you have to. I want you to learn from STUCO that when you do something with intention, you will always get the best results.

Know your intentions are contagious. As the leaders you decided to be this year, no matter how small your role was, and as the leaders I hope you become, know that your emotions and your actions have a strong influence on the people around you. Because your emotions and your actions show your intentions, they show that you care.

Please guys, never stop caring about the things you do, because we need more people who care.

Finally, remember, how much I care about you, how memorable you all made this year for me, and know that I will always be here for you. Congratulations to everyone, seniors we, I will miss you, and next year members; I will be even more annoying.

Thank you for everything, happy summer break!

Ms. Di Muro

Gratitude Journal

Gratitude Journal

Hi everyone,

This week was a little bit emotional. Saying goodbye to the seniors gets harder every year. Seniors, you have no idea how much I’m going to miss you, thank you for letting me part of your senior year, for asking for my help and for sharing all your celebrations with me. I will always remember the class of 2018.

Not only do I have to say goodbye to the seniors, STUCO is also coming to an end. Next week, I think I’ll cry everyday. I have a special post prepared for STUCO, because this year was AMAZING. Thank you for everything guys.

Besides all the crying, and the crying to come, I got a lot of things done. During the unexpected break, I got to clear my mind, visit my family and recharge for the last month of the school year. You might not know this, but the last month of the year is CRAZY for teachers, so this boost of energy is welcomed!

As always, I need to be thankful for my friends/coworkers. I’ve noticed, more than ever, how much they keep me sane (because the students drive me crazy, JKJKJK)

I also want to say, how thankful I am for therapy. It has never been easy for me to open up to people, unlike popular beliefs, and going to therapy helps me deal with my emotions, my thoughts and my needs. We don’t need to be crazy to go to therapy, everyone needs support, and that is what therapy is.

A lot of emotions, in the weeks to follow, and a lot of work, so thankful we can share this time together!

See you around,

Ms. Gaby Di Muro



Even though NHS is a very demanding organization, I believe every single one of you could participate in it if you wanted to. Why? Because inside of us, we all have leadership qualities, you just have to learn how to develop them.

And it’s not easy to develop this quality with our current outside factors. With such a tumultuous situation going us outside of our safety walls of our school and home, we can’t help but feel drowned by the silent tension and feeling of dread every time we hear news about our country.

Yet it’s ok. It’s normal to feel this way. I myself feel it to. I feel like there are times where there is no light at the end of the tunnel. That no matter what we do, it’s all to no avail at the end. And it’s hard to feel like this, especially since I’m the president of an organization that is supposed to embody everything except those feelings.

Nevertheless, I do not see this as a bad thing. I see it as a challenge, as an opportunity to push and better myself as a person and as a member of my community. And it is leadership what makes me push through these feelings of uncertainty and doubt. We would have never thought that the economic situation would get where it is today, yet we still pushed through and we’re able to deliver what we promised, because if we didn’t, we wouldn’t have been the leaders we promised we were going to be.

Instead of giving you an example of a famous leader that most of us don’t have even know who they are, why don’t I give you an example of a person that we all know? Let’s take into account one of our most unnoticed leaders, Mr. Portillo.  He’s a leader not because he is doing his job, but instead because he actually cares and wants to lead students to becoming well-rounded people of character. All the times that he has scolded you on the hallways, it’s a way of showing that he cares. A leader is someone who cares about you, who wants to show you a path that will lead you to success. We all care about people and I guess that what I’m trying to say is that at the end we all have a capacity for leadership, even if it’s in the simplest way possible, it still counts.

Leadership is a practice of individual discipline. What this means is that leadership is trusting yourself and having others trust you to go guide them to a place of prosperity and excellence. You guys trust Mr. Portillo to tell you the right thing to do, even if you don’t want to admit it.

At the end, what we want is for everyone to use the little bit of leadership they have integrated into them and take advantage of it. It can be doing trivial things, such as staying behind to push some chairs into the table or being the first to raise your hand when the teacher asks for help. I believe that teamwork is a force that cannot be reckoned with, and if we all pitch in with a little bit of our leadership, then we can change what we want to, together.


A.S, NHS president 2017-2018