Soaring for new heights, Students Participate in Upper-Level Class Shadow Week

By: Nafisa Anjum

To promote Advanced Placement and Upper-Level Classes this year, Mt. Hebron hosted a shadow week to build student confidence and attraction. Offering over 30 AP classes, Mt. Hebron has a rigorous academic program in common core subjects and electives and encourages students to take them. 

Taking place from Jan. 4 to Jan. 11, students were able to sit in an AP or honors or gifted and talented class and experience it for themselves. Notorious for their expectations and intensity, students hesitate to enroll in these classes. However, to dismiss the notion, Mt. Hebron offered an opportunity for students to see the day-to-day operations of these classes. 

According to the College Board website, “AP provides high school students with the opportunity to take college-level courses and take the AP exams for college credit or advanced placement.”

Mt. Hebron sophomore Shree Susarla considered this when shadowing for AP statistics. Thinking about minimizing her future college credits, Susarala finds it important to learn and experience the rigor of a college-level course in an environment where you have someone to help you. She contrasts this experience to a college environment, where it is more independent for students. 

Mt. Hebron freshman Jahanvi Gandhe, also gave a go at shadow week and participated in an AP Computer Science class. 

“I thought it would be a good opportunity to see what other classes had to offer,” says Gandhe. What felt like a typical day in that class, she got a hands-on experience of what AP Computer Science students were learning and got to play around with computer tools. 

Shadow week allowed students to step into the shoes of an upperclassman and understand what is personally best for them while also challenging themselves. 

“It was sort of beneficial. I got to see what older people do in that class, ” says Gandhe. According to Gadhe, the experience was helpful and gave her more insight into finalizing her schedule as an upcoming sophomore.

“Having the opportunity to shadow a class will allow people to see what the right fit is,” says Susarla, who typically overthinks scheduling. Shadowing AP Statistics helped her conclude whether or not it was the right fit for her, and she would recommend her peers to do the same with other classes. 

Reflecting on their experience with shadow week, Susarla and Gandhe both found shadow week worthwhile to build their confidence and interest in a particular subject. 

“It actually did convince me to take more [AP Classes]. Without this experience, I probably would have been paranoid about taking AP classes next year,” says Susarla. Although she felt that the experience was very beneficial, she would suggest that the program occurs after school rather than during school as it interrupted her daily schedule.

By encouraging students to strive for success and new heights, shadow week allowed many interested students to see what would benefit and suit them best. Observing upper-level classes gave insight into the future and allowed students to see what Mt. Hebron offers. 

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