Huskies Take on “What Grown Up’s Don’t Understand”

Written by NHHS Reporters Mika Gezel, Gregorio Oropeza, Erick Mata & Photography by NHHS Huskies Erica Sherkin, Jordan Sales, Leo Malhan


High school is not only a place to educate ourselves; it’s a crucial part of how we develop socially, mentally, emotionally, and physically on our path to adulthood. 

Photography by Leo Malhan

“Class field trip”

Being a high schooler can be challenging, but adults often make it even more difficult. 

“I think grown-ups don’t understand the amount of social and mental stress that school can cause. We’re expected to be perfect all the time, and I think it can be really draining… Adults forget what it was like to be our age.” Greg Oropeza, 12th grader.

“I wish adults understood the mental toll certain things can take on you during this time in our lives and how going to school on top of that is especially stressful. Things are really serious for us, but adults probably have way more freeing experiences. A lot of people try to find themselves in high school, but I feel like you have way more time for that as an adult.” Kenny Curtis, 11th grader.

Music inspires us and allows our many talented musicians to feel like part of a team.

“I can’t say that North Hollywood [high school], outside of the band, has offered me much of anything. The band program has impacted my life in ways that I could never thoroughly explain. Through the band, I have developed better social skills and improved my musicianship, which is something I want to use as I move on from high school. That’s for sure my highlight of high school: being in the band and being able to share and create music with many amazing, like-minded people.” Skye-Salce-Weaver, 12th grader.

“Marching band helps me get through the school day, because I’m involving myself in what I personally enjoy. I love the arts; it’s a different outlet where I can express myself in a way other than speaking to people. It also makes me feel more connected to the school as a whole since we play at football games, represent our school at competitions, play at concerts for students to come and support our band, etc.” Ava Hernandez, 11th grader.

“I think that the workload of high school is not much different than an actual job, but there is that level of all the extra things you have to balance: social life, extracurriculars, and applying to colleges, for those that decided to, and doing all of that is not something I’ve heard from many adults that I speak to.” Skye Salce-Weaver

Our NHHS sports programs give Huskies a place to make friends and relieve stress.

“Meeting a lot of my friends on the basketball team has helped me broaden my social horizon. It’s helped me branch out from the people I’d normally hang out with. Maybe adults that didn’t participate much in extracurriculars can really underrate what you can get out of playing sports and doing other extracurriculars. They underestimate how much it can help you socially, emotionally, and physically.” Lucas Gonzales, 10th grader.

“I’ve always been a calm and relaxed person, but I guess since joining the football team, people have begun to perceive me differently. People have told me that I look scary or that I seem intimidating, but I think that being on the football team gives people a false image of who you are, which many adults don’t get. Being a student-athlete can be so difficult. I’ve had to constantly deal with the feeling that I’m not good enough, but ever since completing my senior season of Football as a captain, I’ve come to realize that you should put your mental health over anything.” Greg Oropeza.

Photography by Leo Malhan

“We were just hanging out at lunch, having a good time.” Aidan Crews

“I’ve stayed true to myself this entire time. I guess the only thing that changed was being on the football team, although it didn’t change much. I made some new friends and felt like part of a team.” Aidan Crews, 12th grader.

Friends make living through adolescence tolerable. At NHHS, Huskies have a wide range of perspectives on socializing.

Photography by Leo Malhan

“NHHS huskies bonding and making memories”

“I kind of feel like popularity is not a thing at this school. Everyone is kind of the same, and everyone’s confined to their different friend groups. There’s not one person at this school that everyone knows, and there’s not an unknown person. Everyone sticks to their friend groups based on sports, clubs, or whatever.” Lucas Gonzales.

Photography by Leo Malhan

“I don’t care much about social status or socializing in general, which has made it much easier for me to focus on myself, stay out of drama, and be way less stressed. I see so many people wrapped up in things that don’t even matter, and it makes me roll my eyes.” Kenny Curtis.

Photography by Leo Malhan

“The students inside the circle were demonstrating different molecules colliding with one another, while the students holding hands making the outer circle represented the surface area of the collision.”
Ava Hernandez

“The community I’ve built because of people knowing me from my best interests has been long-lasting. It’s so funny too, since in, like, 80’s teen movies, band kids are usually depicted as ‘geeks.’ In reality, so many individuals are interested in what we perform. People actually enjoy our shows during football games!” Ava Hernandez.

All teenagers have unique experiences that shape us into who we are. At NHHS, our school spirit gives all Huskies a place to find themselves.

Photography by Erica Sherkin

“My favorite part of being a Husky is the immense school spirit we have. I absolutely adored being on the field and hearing the hundreds of students cheering with pride for our Football team. I loved being able to experience the rich and vast communities within our school, and I feel like we have something rare here at NHHS.” Greg Oropeza.

“I think grown-ups envision that college, or life outside of high school, marks the beginning of ‘being in the real world.’ I think it starts now. High school gives you that new, awkward, and uneasy environment. High school is tough for everyone, period.” Ava Hernandez.

“I don’t know how [high school] has shaped me versus how I’ve shaped myself while being here. It’s definitely given me a lot of experience with interacting with other people. It’s also given me a huge taste of how I approach work. High school has given me ways to figure out who I am and how I function in the world independently.” Skye Salce Weaver.

Photography by Jordan Sales

Grown ups think that students just wake up, go to school, come home, do homework and go to sleep. However, that is further from the truth. 

While that may be true for some that is not the case with student athletes. Athletes sometimes have to come to school at 6 in the morning for morning practice. During the summer it is not a time to relax for athletes since they have off season training as well. Summer is a big time when fall sports athletes start preparing for the new semester.

Photography by Jordan Sales

Some student athletes pour their souls into practicing putting in hours upon hours of practice. Some may even go and do their own practice after team practice. Some don’t come home until past 10 PM.

Student athletes have their schedule full everyday. It is a rigorous routine. Some athletes even have AP classes that they have to keep up with. Some athletes even have jobs to go to. This lifestyle isn’t suitable for everyone but these athletes do it everyday.

Photography by Jordan Sales

Teachers will yell at these student athletes, and tell them that they don’t do any work and that they are lazy. However, what they don’t understand is that they are trying. These students only have 24 hours a day. Going to school for 7 hours, having practice for 2 hours, having work for 4-6 hours, and then having to do homework for 2-4 hours. Then grown ups expect these students to not be exhausted from this daily routine. That is what grown ups don’t understand.

Brenden Simson said that “When parents call us lazy for not having a job or not doing certain chores perfectly on time or little things that parents ask us to do it gets to you because yes being an adult is hard but it’s also hard to go to school, where you don’t wanna be for 8 hours and then going to a 2 or 3 hour practice where you exert all of your energy and thinking to try and perform well enough and build a winning team every day plus a 3 hours on saturdays for basketball maintaining good grades, having a social life, and really being successful in your sport takes a lot more time than just that time on school campus and when you really think about it i’m spending the hours of 8:30-6:30 everyday at school to come home and do homework just to do it all again the next day, which really leaves no time for myself outside of sundays but even on sundays there’s chores and more homework or family events or you have to go to the gym.”

Photography by Jordan Sales

Alex Espinoza explained that it is hard being an athlete due to “…how much time and dedication it actually takes especially if you’re not as tall or strong or naturally athletically gifted, you need to work way harder in order to be given the same opportunities or even have a chance to chase after a future in sports especially in areas not as known for producing top athletes like noho.”

Ronnie Gipson “Athletes have a certain morality. Athletes hold themselves to a certain standard that regular people wouldn’t hold themselves too.”

Most people, specifically grown-ups, believe that school is as easy as just going. Adults fail to recognize the things that happen in between.

School is not only a place where kids go to learn, but also a place where we’re guided into becoming college-ready, responsible adults. The following pictures and quotes convey what students think grownups don’t understand about school.

Photography by Erica Sherkin

“Grownups don’t understand that while going to school we deal with other things. Such as people who play sports have practices often and might miss a couple of homework assignments because they come home late and tired. They also don’t understand how school works in a way and that most students only do the work for the grade and don’t actually want to learn about things.” said Edward Badoyan, a senior soccer player at North Hollywood

“They don’t understand the stress and expectations they put on us can really affect our mental health and how we perceive ourselves. We’re expected to be great and perfect. They think they can shape us to be something they weren’t while they project their failures and what they wanted to accomplish onto our lives and make us suffer from that. They don’t understand that they affect us so negatively because they only care about their feelings and don’t acknowledge ours and stick to what is suitable for them.” said Jackie Nevarez, a senior at North Hollywood High School.

“My parents don’t understand why I like going to the gym. They think it’s a waste of time and that I’m putting my body in danger by lifting weights or something,” said David Jinian, a senior at North Hollywood.

“They don’t understand the problems kids go through in this new generation,” Said Dalia Cuevas, a senior at North Hollywood High.

“They don’t understand how things affect our generation’s health. Mental health matters and they dint understand how certain things cause stress or anxiety. Peers also cause stress.” said Sky Lopez, a Junior at North Hollywood Highschool. 

“Sometimes they don’t understand the pressure we get from peers and them to succeed. I feel like grownups think success comes easily because were young but we have to work for it too.” said Seven Anthony, a junior and member of Husky Elite. 

“They don’t understand how draining school can be. It’s a relentless cycle. It starts in 9th grade where you need to get good grades and then in college, you need good grades to get grants and it just never ends.” said Julie Alas-Castillo, an SAS senior at North Hollywood.

Photography by Erica Sherkin

Emily Dietz, an HGM senior and multi-sport student-athlete had this to say: “I think grownups don’t understand the full extent of the stress that kids experience. College admissions have become so much more than just playing a sport and getting A’s, so there’s more pressure to have just a packed, unmanageable schedule. In my experience, I think a lot of adults would see the sports I did and my grades and think I’m guaranteed a spot at a top college, but there were a lot of people who matched or exceeded my stats. Now, it takes being extraordinary at something in order to get into the school you want, which makes it hard to balance school with things you enjoy. I think adults sometimes don’t realize how the world has evolved to place a different form of stress on youth today. And this stress can take the form of anxiety, depression, or other mental health problems that often get written off as weakness. Also, with world issues like school shootings, climate change, and political tensions, it becomes even harder to care about school life because there are bigger problems.”

“They don’t understand that what we say to our friends is mostly just jokes but that our friends are just as important to us as they are,” said Logan Orozco, a North Hollywood sophomore and varsity Football player.

“I don’t think grown-ups understand how students have to juggle between different classes and different subjects. not only that but also deal with other students at school and how they get treated by other students at school. Times are also very different from when they were kids and don’t realize certain developments in school. such as more technology and socialization.” said Angelina Pantoja, a SAS senior at North Hollywood.

“I’d say that they may not understand how important it is to enjoy the high school years because they are some of the most unique times of people’s lives. This could be in regards to how strict they are when hanging out with friends, going to events, or letting loose to just have fun during this time,” said Anthony Diaz, a junior soccer player at North Hollywood.

Photography by Erica Sherkin

“Most adults believe that we are too addicted to our phones and rely too much on technology resulting in a lack of basic skills. Grownups just don’t seem to understand the world we grew up in. Even as children we become habituated to our phones, but how could you blame us? Thus seemingly straightforward tasks like going to bed present us with a choice between closing our eyes to emptiness or staring at a screen that contains essentially everything we have ever known. With everything in our hands, we really only have two drastically opposing options: everything or nothing. Any question I have can be answered in less than a second, or as Google likes to note: About 52,600,000 results (0.43 seconds). While we have advantages no other generation has ever experienced, different challenges arise. Everything and anything has become possible. You make a mistake and in just 5 seconds the whole world will know. Even our cameras are far more advanced than they have ever been, meaning you no longer have to spend days painting a specific moment in time. Instead, the artist in us must find new ways to be seen, heard, and even recognized. One thing adults may come to understand is that feeling of longing to be heard, feelings of discontent with yourself. The difference is that now our generation has been given that opportunity to escape and be something new anytime they want.” said Mia Estrada.

“They don’t understand that times have changed and that things are done differently now” said Sergio Santiago, a Junior Varsity Football Player.