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The Colonel Chronicle

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Senior Profile: Ilianna Hernandez

Ilianna Hernadez ’24

It’s Senior Season! As the year comes to a close, many students are reflecting on their school year, especially our seniors. There is one senior you may not know, as she often does not strive for the limelight – but she has personally been a huge inspiration for myself: Ilianna Hernandez. She has gone to South all four years of high school, and has been a stand out student and role model for myself, and other classmates over the years. I decided to interview her to see her view on her senior year and college application process, and to show that even if you don’t have straight A’s, or think you aren’t able to afford going to college, you can still have a bright future.

Ilianna started her senior year nervous. She says that starting such a pivotal year in her life was scary, as there is a lot of pressure transitioning from high school to college, and it’s very unpredictable. When she started to approach her college application process, she was stuck, because she didn’t know what she wanted to do. Many people struggle with this issue, and it can make the college application process even more difficult and pressuring.

As I was talking to Ilianna, we consistently wrapped back to an idea of just simply trying. During our conversation, we discussed the college application process, and how it can be daunting, but to not limit yourself to places you either don’t think you won’t get into, or don’t think you can afford. “There are scholarships for everything” Ilianna says, and she’s right. Many students think that since they can’t afford college, they shouldn’t try, and that isn’t the truth. She says to start early, and to get advice from your teachers on schools, because most of the time, they have a lot of good information and words of wisdom about college. 

Ilianna shares that she did receive a good amount of scholarship money for college. A lot of this money being provided is through merit, as she has maintained good grades over the years. Although good grades help, they aren’t everything. College applications and scholarships can be awarded for many different reasons, not just because of good grades. It reminded me of the time my middle school science teacher said she was awarded fifty dollars of scholarship money for being left-handed, which goes to show that many colleges and universities can give out money and aid for students for just about anything. . “Don’t limit yourself from applying to certain schools, just because you think you might not get in or be able to afford it.” Throughout our whole conversation, Ilianna was very adamant about not limiting herself to apply to certain schools. “Don’t be scared to apply. Start early, and apply, even if you don’t think you will get in.” By looking at what each college offered after applying, she was then able to make her choice with what college gave her the best deal, along with what interested her the most.

Ilianna is headed to Clark University in the fall, and is majoring in Psychology, with a minor in Sociology. Congratulations Ilianna, your South High family wishes you the best of luck for your future endeavors! 

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About the Contributor
Sarah Jeffers
Sarah Jeffers, Social Media Manager

Hello! I am part of the Class of '25 and I am so excited to be managing the social medias this year! I have always loved to keep my friends and family up to date on things (even if they haven’t wanted to hear it). I have also found a love for reading about what is happening all around us. I hope to be able to bring the stories and life of South High and beyond to an accessible outlet!

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