Now that they’ve graduated, high school seniors Jared Sam Agtunong and Alisha Summers agreed to offer advice to the Class of 2014. Summers encouraged seniors to enjoy their final year by working hard yet not overloading their schedules. “This is the year that you want to enjoy,” she said. “I also advise the next class to start applying to college early because you do not want to miss any precious opportunities because you procrastinated on applications.” She said she believes she’s grown more confident through her K-12 education and that it’s prepared her for what’s next. “Hopefully all that I have learned will be useful for the future because I know that change can be exciting yet intimidating.”
“My advice to the next high school seniors is to remember who you are and focus on your goals and passion,” Agtunong said. As a senior, he engaged in student government roles and in Youth Alliance, a community engagement project coordinated by Maui Economic Development Board. “I was so glad I got involved because that’s how I truly found my passion. I learned I want to serve my community,” he said. Agtunong will attend Vanguard University in Costa Mesa, California, and major in political science and international relations. “All my years of schooling taught me to be a service leader so that’s what I want to do in life,” he said, adding that he would like to eventually return to Maui.
Summers will enroll at the University of Hawaii at Manoa where she’ll pursue environmental studies. She hopes to travel and study abroad. “I love Maui and I find it a relaxing and beautiful place to live. After I explore, I would consider coming back and giving back to Maui’s community.” Agtunong and Summers agreed that family and teachers contributed to their high school success. “That’s why I’d tell seniors, ask for help when needed,” he said. “There are people ready to help you and want to help but you have to ask for it.”