We asked our GHS National Merit Semifinalists to answer a few questions to get to know them better, below are the answers from Josh Schrock:
How much have you pushed yourself academically in high school regarding class choices and scheduling? Are there others who have pushed or encouraged you?
I don’t think I had been pushed at Goshen High School until I began my junior year. The workload from my full IB schedule was extreme (and at times it felt excessive) but I still had many classes that I enjoyed. Calculus and IB Physics both had a lot of homework, but I enjoyed learning in both classes. In fact, I decided to take college-level multivariable differential calculus first semester this year from Stanford. I am grateful for the work that Mr. Moore has done to prepare me for this higher-level class. If anything, I feel that I have been pushed by my teachers and peers at Goshen to keep improving and reaching for the next level of knowledge.
How much time do you spend studying?
Currently, I spend much more time doing work for class than I do studying. With a full IB schedule, a college class, and soccer, I sometimes feel like I am treading water in a pool of work. For example, my Mondays begin at 7:20 a.m. with Camerata orchestra, then after I go through all my classes, I have soccer practice until 5:30 p.m. After getting home, eating, and getting a start on my homework, I must attend my college class from 8:00 to 9:30 p.m. This is on top of the extra work that IB requires, such as the Extended Essay and TOK presentation, classwork, like the readings for IB history, and college applications. I am glad that I took the SAT last year because there is no way that I would have time to prepare for it this year.
Do you feel that SRT (Student Resource Time) is a valuable tool for students? If so, why?
For me, SRT is really useful. I like that it gives me time to work on homework and go to club meetings that would otherwise have to take place outside of school. It is also very useful for freshmen, as their SRT teachers will show them around and make a strong connection with them when everything is new. However, I feel that it should be used, at least during the beginning of senior year, to teach us how to apply to colleges and get things set up. So far, I have not gotten much guidance on how to apply to colleges, and what I did get came from other students who graduated last year. This is kind of disappointing for me because I know that there are a lot of students who have no idea how to even begin the process. But in general, SRT is very useful and I am glad that our school offers it.
What do you like to do with your free time?
In my free time, I enjoy playing soccer, watching movies, playing video games, and playing the cello. I also enjoy coding, and I have made a program that our engineering department is using to organize the lab. When I have time I like to cook, and I also have enjoyed making videos for school and other organizations.
What are your plans for next year and beyond?
Next year I hope to go to college in California, preferably Stanford. Going somewhere new really appeals to me, and I think I will be able to make good connections with engineers who are doing cutting edge work there. I am planning on studying engineering and/or computer science.
What is the best thing about Goshen schools? What is the worst?
The best thing about Goshen Schools is that they offer a wide range of paths for people to take throughout school. For example, I enjoyed being able to skip a year in math in the 6th grade because it has allowed me to take the college-level math that I am doing right now. I also enjoyed project-based learning in 8th grade via New Tech. I think that these options are great at allowing us to personalize our education.
As you can see from Alex’s post yesterday and Josh’s today, these national merit scholar semifinalists are very busy! They are dedicated to their education, and they are spending time exploring the things that spark their interests. We made a couple of short videos in the new GHS Engineering Lab, as the lab was of particular interest to Josh. You can look for those videos to be posted today as well.
Congratulations, Josh, on being named one of only four National Merit Semifinalists in Elkhart County. We wish you the best as you complete your senior year and step into your bright future!