Opinion: Seniors should be taught more life skills

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Students in college often do not have their own kitchens, but learning how to cook in one is useful for the future. Image from Creative Commons.

By the time one becomes a senior in high school, that person has taken many in-depth classes about a variety of topics, including math, science, English, and history. However, there is one very important subject that high schoolers never get much exposure to, which are practical life skills. With seniors being in their last year of school before moving out into college and the real world, it is imperative that they obtain practical knowledge to make living alone more manageable.

Graduating from high school is the first major step in a student’s transition into adulthood. When a student goes to college, it will be the first time that that person is living completely independently without his or her parents being there for guidance. Because students will no longer have their parents there to help them, the students must possess the knowledge of knowing how to live on their own.

“I think it would be a good idea if Notre Dame taught us more life skills,” said senior Ben Linnenkamp. “It’s important for students to know how to cook and manage money when they go to college.”

Linnenkamp has learned many practical skills from his parents, so he knows the basics of cooking and how to make repairs on cars and homes. However, not all high school students are quite as knowledgeable. According to EdSource, “Results from a multi-year College and Career Readiness survey of 165,000 high school students conducted by YouthTruth, a San Francisco-based nonprofit, found that 45 percent of students feel positive about their college and career readiness.”

With less than 50 percent of high school students feeling prepared for college, it is clear that the high schools themselves should take action and help students feel more prepared for living on their own. One solution could be to offer an elective class that teaches students how to cook basic meals, how to be financially responsible, and how to make basic home and auto repairs.

“I think a class like that would help students a lot,” said senior Jaxen Jafari. “I would think about taking it because it could be a low-stress class that also teaches a lot of important skills.”

Offering a seniors-only life skills class would be hugely beneficial for students who feel unready for college. By learning basic life skills for when they move out and are living on their own, students could feel significantly more confident about their ability to live on their own.

While the primary goal of high schools is to prepare students for college academically, there is no reason why they should not prepare students for college with practical knowledge as well. Offering a class that helps seniors learn how to live on their own will make them feel more confident about moving out and moving on into the real world.