The Student News Site of St. Petersburg High School

Palmetto & Pine


Palmetto & Pine

Palmetto & Pine

Stopping the Summer Slide: SPHS Students’ Academic Experiences

Students Lily Alfaro and Jocelyn Lioe describe how their summer academic experiences expanded their knowledge and abilities.
Ilene Goddard
Having the privilege of experiencing academic experiences such as these improves students’ all-around intellect, creativity, and independence.

For most students, summer break is the most anticipated time of the year: no school, no deadlines, no classes. However, as the start of school rolls around, many students struggle to adjust to the constant stress of academia. After three months of relaxation, it can be challenging to return to a state of constant determination, organization, and intellect. However, many students at St. Petersburg High School use the summer to continue expanding their knowledge and abilities across many fields. 

Junior Lily Alfaro participated in the St. Petersburg High School Marching Band’s summer band camp. This is a five-day camp where marching band students begin rehearsals for the show they will perform during halftime at football games and competitions. Alfaro says that it is “the most exhausting but rewarding thing ever.” Lasting six hours every day, students grow musically and improve (or learn) their marching skills. It is also a time when the band begins to form connections with one another, helping each other and playing team-building games. Alfaro notes that she was “on the verge of quitting band” but decided to try band camp to “see how it went.” After being a part of the band’s drumline for two years, she switched to the saxophone, which she says “made all the difference” and has helped her improve her musical prowess.

Junior Jocelyn Lioe participated in the University of California, Santa Barbara’s Summer Research Academies Program on a cultural studies track. She participated in a research project where they analyzed the ways that video game lobbies foster discriminatory language. Lioe says that “it was incredibly fun and fulfilling as [she] learned so much and [she] was able to meet so many new people.” Lioe also comments that getting a taste of the college experience at an R1-level university allowed her to “have a lot of freedom [through] living on [her] own.” Initially, she struggled to adjust to the academic workload, social scene, and campus, but she feels she has learned an incredible amount about herself and her strengths. She encourages experiencing college summer programs as “it was one of the best experiences [she’s] ever had.”

Having the privilege of experiencing academic experiences such as these improves students’ all-around intellect, creativity, and independence. Not only will these experiences make the back-to-school transition smoother, but they can also stimulate young scholars’ interests in other fields.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributors
Ellie Miller, Arts & Entertainment Editor
Ilene Goddard, Photography Editor

Comments (0)

All Palmetto & Pine Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *