The School Newspaper of Vista Ridge High School

The Word

The School Newspaper of Vista Ridge High School

The Word

The School Newspaper of Vista Ridge High School

The Word

Share Button

One Step Closer

Senior Joscelyn Flores Silva Reflects On Time In High School, The Lessons Learned, and Future Plans
Edgar Flores Silva
After being admitted to Trinity University in San Antonio, senior Joscelyn Flores Silva snaps a picture at the admitted student tour in April.

She stares at the computer screen, listening to her teacher while she drifts off and wonders what it’s like to attend high school in person.

One year later, Joscelyn Flores Silva steps into the halls of her new school for the first time, excited for the opportunities ahead.

From starting out her freshman year behind a computer screen amidst a pandemic to going on to be National Spanish Honor Society president her junior and senior year as well as editor-in-chief of the yearbook staff, senior Joscelyn Flores Silva hasn’t exactly had the most conventional high school experience.

“I feel like if you ask any graduating senior (about their first impression) they’ll be like ‘it was through a computer screen so I don’t really know,’” Silva said. “I unfortunately didn’t really get a first impression in freshman year, and in sophomore year it was definitely hard to adjust.” 

Story continues below advertisement

As someone not very outgoing and generally very reserved and introverted, Silva had a different experience going into online school, which only enhanced that part of herself. There were upsides to the situation though.

“I guess something good that came out of that was the fact that I got closer with my siblings,” Silva said “I really learned the value of just any sort of relationship and that you should appreciate anybody who’s really important to you.”

She took journalism her freshman year, initially as a filler class, but Silva would go on to join the yearbook class the following three years. Being graded on the ability to be outgoing really helped her branch out. Journalism and yearbook required her to talk to new people and go to lots of different events. 

“With yearbook it forced me to be more comfortable in my own voice,” Silva said. “The longevity of you just participating in a certain organization or club or class, you make an impact on people. You leave your mark and that affects other people so act accordingly to good morals.”

Excited to take her senior portrait, senior Joscelyn Flores Silva poses in her cap and gown at Cady Studios with a smile on her face. (Edgar Flores Silva)

Silva’s ability to step up allowed her to take on the role of junior editor her junior year, and editor-in-chief her senior year. The job consisted of making the big decisions with the other editors, keeping everyone on task, and overall making sure everything ran smoothly.

“I feel like leadership, it’s more than the title, you have to earn the title, you have to work hard, you have to guide people, and you have to set a good example because you are what people mimic,” Silva said. “You need to learn how to be able to think things through and solve problems. I feel like I’m a very critical thinker and I tend to problem solve everything and that just led me to want to run for certain positions.”

Along with that, Silva had the opportunity to be National Spanish Honor Society president, a role which consisted of coordinating events and working with lots of different people. The organization worked hard to help Latin communities and less fortunate communities as well, through donations and volunteering.

“I feel what’s really inspiring me is the diversity at school and knowing that we have numerous communities everywhere we go.” Silva said. “(Being president) is really rewarding, I get to be a part of a team; I work really hard with the other officers, we come together and talk, it helped me a lot with my communication skills.”

But, as Silva later learned, high school wasn’t always easy, and neither was working nonstop. For a period of time, she spent lunch in teachers’ rooms, not eating due to stress.

“I was just so focused on being “perfect” in academics, I just didn’t find time to take care of myself. But I learned that my physical well-being is really important and so is my mental and emotional well-being,” Silva said. “That really impacted me because I tend to look deeper now and try to see if anybody else needs help; I try to make a community for them and try to be nice to everybody as much as I can be.”

Silva knew from a very young age what she wanted to do in her future. She was interested in STEM, her favorite class being Anatomy & Physiology. A big reason for this was because of her childhood experiences.

“I think one of the main things was, when I was younger, English was funky,” Silva said. “I had to speak only Spanish at home so when I got to school, it got difficult, trying to balance both and oscillate between speaking English here and Spanish at home. And then all of a sudden I started bilingual classes in elementary school and now I have to speak Spanish at school but it’s different from how I speak it at home. It just got really confusing, so that guided me to lean more towards subjects that didn’t really require me to read or write a whole ton.”

The opportunities that didn’t exist for her parents, immigrants from Mexico, opened Silva’s eyes to the limitless ones she had. Her mom’s dream of becoming a physician was stunted at a young age, inspiring Silva to become one herself.

“It definitely was an awakening whenever I realized that I have these opportunities and that I should take full advantage of everything that I have,” Silva said. “My mom always told me ‘if you’re going to do something, no matter whatever you do, whether it may be being manager at the McDonald’s down the street or being a renowned surgeon, be the best, do your best, and strive to the best, don’t limit yourself and don’t hold back.’ That’s sort of like my motto.”

Poised to attend Trinity University at San Antonio in the fall, Silva is looking forward to pursuing a career in the medical field. The things she learned over the last four years will stick with her though.

“People say ‘the sky’s the limit’ like no, go to space, get out of this universe. Do what you want to do and really just forget about everything that people say to you,” Silva said. “Do your own thing, focus on yourself, be true to yourself, that’s my main message. Have good morals and  just tell your parents, or siblings, friends, or your grandma that you care about them and that you appreciate them.”

Share Button

Leave a Comment
About the Contributor
Edgar Flores Silva, Journalism Contributor

Comments (0)

All The Word Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *