Freshmen 2.0: Sophomore class of 2024 share first high school experience



Left to right: Sophomores Paul Ereng, Sofia Reese, senior Kalista Fong, Patrizia Ruiz, Diego, bottom Jezabelle Meraz, Mia Orona take part of their first in-person student orientaion and second overall after the first was done virtually via Zoom in the summer of 2020.

Patrizia Ruiz, Staff

One year ago, every El Paso High student was at home working completely online. Now, everyone is attending school working face-to-face. The quick adjustment from online to in-person school seems simple for some and a bit more difficult for other sophomores that did not get the full freshman experience.

With the new 2021-22 school year starting, many sophomores reflect on how they were affected by the pandemic academically and socially, and how it feels to come back to in-person school.

“At first it was a little weird but after the weirdness, I started to really like it because it’s a really nice change, and I’m much more motivated to do well in school,”  Emma White said.

While many sophomores felt that in person school was a refreshing change, others say that in-person school felt unnatural after being at home for so long.

“It felt a bit forced. It felt like we weren’t ready. And that was something that we just had to do, not that we wanted to,” Mathias Rogness said.

All sophomores now have the opportunity to participate in high school activities and clubs and make new friends while doing so.

“I didn’t really get to do anything or socialize or be part of the events. In-person is more fun and more interactive,” Raina Porras said.

Other sophomores felt like they missed out on their full freshman experience because of online learning.

“I wasn’t able to go through most freshmen experiences. There weren’t any football games or volleyball games or anything that I was able to go to as a freshman,” Paco Intebi said.

Some sophomores felt as if virtual school was a difficult time for them to get their work done because of the distraction and liberty of being allowed to basically do anything they wanted to at any time as long as they met the deadline of their assignment.

“I think online school was harder because I had a harder time focusing and getting things done,” Zoey Jones said.

Nonetheless, the sophomore class has tried to stay optimistic. The class of 2024 is bouncing back and looking forward to the future. Many are already setting goals for themselves as sophomores, with goals ranging from making new friends to earning exemplary grades this school year.

“Some goals I have for this year is to attempt to get all A’s. Also, to go ghost hunting in this historic school,” Emma said.

Freshman year is the year to meet new people and make new friends. Current sophomores were incapable of having that experience because of online school.

“One of my goals for this year is to make way more friends than I made last year. I had a hard time making friends last year because it was online and I could not really approach anyone on zoom,” Meg Inzer said.

El Paso high school is a beautiful school with prideful students. Everyone has tiger spirit in them and lets it out at games.

“My favorite thing about El Paso high school is all the pride that the school has. As a volleyball player, it’s incredible to always have a full student section that is there to cheer us on,” Gianna Lazcano said.

Many sophomores are grateful for the in-person switch, since most did not get to experience sitting in the stadium on Friday-night lights or supporting the Tigers in the student section at volleyball games as freshmen. Now that school is in-person, the sophomores can cherish the moments they get to show pride for El Paso high even more.

“I love the people that I’ve met at El Paso high and all of the memorable experiences I’ve had so far,” Raina said.