An “A” in exchange for sleep deprivation and an unhealthy diet

An

Cartoon courtesy of Catherine Lin

In today’s society, the definition of a well-rounded student has become that of one who plays varsity in more than one sport, takes AP and Honors classes all four years, is employed in a part-time job, is involved in various leadership positions and dedicates most of his or her weekend to volunteer work.

It is justified that a student needs to be a well-rounded young adult, but such ridiculous expectations are sometimes impossible to achieve. A high school student, no matter his or her grade level, needs at least 9.5 hours of sleep, according to Nationwide Children’s Hospital. On a hypothetical level, if a high school student is able to receive this much sleep, he or she is left with 14.5 hours for the rest of the day. Seven hours from the 14.5 are gone to school, leaving 7.5 hours, out of which 2-3 hours may be dedicated to sports. That leaves only 4.5 hours to spare. Now, in order to be a well-rounded student, the student must somehow fit his part-time job and various leadership positions within those 4.5 hours. Notice that so far the student has not had anything to eat, any time to rest or any time to catch up with his friends or social life.

In order to be an ideal well-rounded candidate for most universities in the nation, the student has failed to create a personal identity, failed to make friends and even failed to maintain a healthy diet. Kids, ages 14-18, are burying themselves under these unrealistic expectations that are not necessary to have a bright future. High school is the ideal place to create some of the best memories. In their futures, students do not want to be narrating to their kids about how some of their best memories were endless hours of studying. Disregarding the need to get into a dream university, students should make time for themselves because, one way or another, they are going to achieve what they are meant for in life.