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From the Class of 2023

The IPS Class of 2023 had an incredible year – but don’t take it from us! Hear from them below.

Shortridge High School Students

I am among many students who have been honored to receive a financial package so good that I won’t have to worry about the cost of university. Of course, this honor wouldn’t have been possible without the many admirable teachers and staff that have crossed my path during my attendance at Shortridge. I’ve met many staff who have been empathetic to my situation and allowed me to seek support. My history teacher, Mrs. Bielefeld, has probably been the closest teacher to me during my education. I’ve spent the majority of my life putting the needs of others before mine and it had caused me to be swept into a negative current that I thought I would drown in. I would often come to school distraught over conflicting experiences and people to whom I’ve been a puppet for my whole life. She was the first person I’ve ever been able to truly confide in, without the fear of judgment because she was able to help me flourish. Mrs. Bielefeld is someone that I’ve come to have an unspeakable amount of respect for. Because of her words, I’ve allowed myself to be free of the anchor of my past. I feel free to take a journey of my own in my life, and even when I falter in confidence in my decisions, she reminds me that I don’t have to hold myself to the expectations of others. I’m grateful to be able to take a giant leap toward my future, with a true smile, because of the supporting staff at Shortridge.

I’m thankful for my two years here at Shortridge as I begin to wrap up my senior year as a 2023 graduate! Being here was a journey. I was confused. I felt like I didn’t belong here because I didn’t know my place. When I first got here, the first teacher who showed me support was Ms.Newsom. It was also her first-year of teaching so we got to know each other, and she let me in with open arms. I’m so thankful for her and her support. Before Shortridge, I never knew what IB was, and I’m glad that I do now because I feel like I’m all set after high school. What I like about Shortridge is that it’s a school that challenges you, critiques your skills, and gets you ready for college. When they critique you here, they don’t always just tell you what you want to hear, they give you real feedback, which I like because with every mistake I’m learning and becoming better. I take criticism very well because I love to know what my strengths and weaknesses are so that I can change the way I work to fix them. Being her, I learned a lot more about myself and that I’m good at multitasking when it comes to writing essay after essay. I would like to thank the volunteer writing tutors from Butler, Mr. Speckman and Ms.Huehls for pushing me and helping me realize that I am a good writer and that I’ve been procrastinating for nothing. I enjoy my time in the writing center with them because everyday I learn something new. I also like the way the teachers here take the time to ask you questions and check on your mental health and how you’re doing. Most teachers don’t do that and I’m grateful to have all the amazing teachers at Shortridge who care about the students and don’t make it all about schoolwork. I enormously appreciate a place where I can learn and explore new talents within myself that I didn’t know I had.

Attending an IPS school has greatly shaped me and my future in ways I could never repay. IPS staff, specifically at Shortridge, have helped me overcome barriers in which I didn’t know were possible. I am the daughter of two immigrants, but in 2020 I was homeless and left to support myself. During the pandemic, I didn’t have many resources or opportunities to resort to. I enrolled at Shortridge my sophomore year and am beyond appreciative of the staff I’ve been given the opportunity to work with.  

Writing Specialist Chris Speckman and social workers Linda Temme and Chelsea English have been my backbone throughout my entire senior year and without their support I wouldn’t be attending IU. They helped  me pursue my dreams of postsecondary education by assisting me with my FAFSA dependency appeal letters. Mr. Speckman spent a lot of time with me reviewing the letters, making sure they were appropriate and as authentic as possible. These letters took over three months to collect.. With this submitted successfully, not only will my college tuition be covered for, so will my housing and meal plan. Mrs. Temme was able to get me my McKinney-Vento signed. All of these staff members helped me reach levels I couldn’t have imagined. 

Mr. Speckman has been there for me my entire senior year, and he has been such a role model to me and my peers. He is very understanding and giving. It is rare to find people like him! 

I would like to thank these amazing faculty members and would like to recognize them. They provide a lot for not just me, but my entire school community. Mr. Marino is another amazing staff member that helped me get through my last two years of high school. He provided me with the resources I needed junior year to achieve my goals. IPS staff don’t get the amount of recognition they deserve as they have provided me with something I could never pay back— a future! 

Throughout my four years here at Shortridge High School I have had a handful of teachers help me through some tough or frustrating times. Here at Shortridge I was never left in the dark when I needed help or simply needed someone to talk to, running from needing help on a paper to just needing to talk about something not even school related. I had teachers who no matter how behind my mental health was pushing me back wouldn’t let me stay behind, they pushed me to finish my work, get through the school day and apply to college. I will admit school was never the easiest for me but one thing I can say is thanks to all the support I had from these teachers I accomplished so much more than I would’ve ever expected. My senior year especially, I was given the opportunity to be a part of an internship and gain new opportunities at The Children’s Museum. There I was able to experience and learn new aspects of myself, such as having such a big connection with kids and really enjoying working with the HR department. I was also named co-president of the Spanish Honor Society, with that I was able to explore and express my own culture throughout the school. I applied to college and plan to continue on to Indiana University Bloomington for the next few years, I couldn’t have done that without the help I received. If I could turn back and tell my 6th grade self I am where I am right now, days away from graduating, going to college, have received scholarships and most importantly ready to give back to my parents I would never have believed it, for all the support I received, I thank you guys so much! 

Thank you, Mrs.Garner,  Mr. Speckman, Mrs. Armstrong and Mrs. Huehls 

I never knew with certainty what I was going to do after highschool due to some financial and personal aspects of my life. I knew I wanted to help others but wasn’t quite sure on how to do it. Amanda Cory and John Paarlberg have been my biggest supporters and mentors throughout my highschool years. They’ve supported me and encouraged me to do what I believe would make me happy. Because of Mrs. Cory and Mr. Paarlberg I am motivated and excited to become an interpreter in medical and law scenarios. They’ve taught me to not give up and keep going even when plans are shifted from what you expected. They are two individuals I hope to keep in touch with and never forget.