Columnist encourages students to accept change.

By Matthew Shepherd, ’19

Throughout my four years of high school, I’ve seen and experienced parts of the school system that tend to terrify people including myself. Whether it’s a large upcoming test or asking someone to Prom, everyone seems to have some sort of fear within the walls of UAHS. Despite this, there is one thing that has been scaring people that should be a cause for celebration or, at the very least, open discussion: change.

Now, I don’t mean to say that every change should be embraced at face value; everything should be treated with a healthy degree of skepticism. That being said, people shouldn’t treat change with endless amounts of anger. Change, while frightening in the moment, can lead to vast improvements in the future.

Over the last four years and in the years following my graduation, students have and will experience changes that cause a large amount of displeasure. The two major changes affecting students at this moment seem to be the construction of the new high school and the replacement of the school laptops with iPads.

Both of these changes have negatives that can lead to unhappiness. This is in no way invalid. The new building, for instance, has cost many their ability to park near the school, and the iPads initially seems less powerful and capable than the computers. Despite this, these changes hold so much potential for positivity that they deserve some amount of support. The new school will allow future generations of students to have an environment to learn that is far better than the one we have now. And the iPads, while not as inherently powerful as computers, can still be incredibly useful in helping students to learn, as the program at the Ohio State University has proven.

The best way to stop fearing change is to explore these positives and weigh them against the short-term negatives. Even if these negatives still seem to outweigh the benefits, that should give rise to healthy and productive discussion rather than anger and dismissal.

Learning to accept change is a difficult skill to master. In fact, it’s completely natural to fear the unknown; the basis of any good horror story is exploring the unknown brought on by some degree of change. Despite this, by becoming comfortable with change, we can foster a more positive environment without the negativity that usually accompanies any announcements of changes.