Senior Emily Pollack Posts Video on Instagram About Last Year of High School

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Emily (right) and twin sister Kate (left) ride in their neighborhoods parade for the graduated seniors.

Senior Emily Pollack, and soon to be attending college at the University of Georgia (UGA), has grown up in Decatur and has attended City Schools of Decatur all her years of schooling. Growing up in a smaller city like Decatur, Pollack never sees an unfamiliar face in her senior class while walking through the halls of Decatur High School (DHS). 

“It’s a really nice feeling to be able to smile and say hello to everyone,” she said. 

Along with the outbreak of COVID-19 and global pandemic, Pollack’s senior year abruptly ended,  causing her to miss her last prom and a sizable portion of her last lacrosse season. 

“I remember sobbing after lacrosse practice on March 12th after my friends and I heard the news,” she said. 

However, for Pollack, she never felt overly sad over what happened, mainly just shocked and confused.

“When I was talking to my friends right when it happened I didn’t really feel anything… it never really hit me,” she said. 

Before starting school, Pollack and her friends decided to make a video about their senior year to encapsulate all of the great times they have had at DHS. Pollack planned to take one short clip of footage each day starting on the first day of school to graduation. 

“I tried to film the most fun part out of every day,” she said. 

Emily (back left) air hugs friend Hannah Lariscy (right) who also posted a video showcasing her senior year experience.

A few of Pollack’s friends decided to make videos too and they all shared footage. Once school was canceled on the basis of the rise of COVID-19 cases in Georgia, Pollack and her friends’ videos came to an abrupt end. 

“I was very upset about missing spring break and other events we should have had, and my video didn’t get to finish the way I wanted it to because we didn’t get to have graduation,” Pollack said.

However, Pollack still decided to put the video together with the footage she was able to get. Creating the video and sharing it with her friends and family helped her cope with the loss of going to school physically, since the last of her senior year,  from the end of March to May, finished virtually 

“I would watch it on a loop, and I saw that I’ve had a great year. It doesn’t matter that I missed the last few months, would they have been amazing? Yes. But did I have an amazing year? Yes,” Pollack said.

When reflecting on her High School experience through the video, Pollack is going to miss the closeness she has always felt in Decatur once she is able to go to college at UGA;

“I definitely won’t get to meet everyone in my 6,000 person class (at UGA),” she said.

Emily (front far right) and her neighborhood friends toss their caps into the air to celebrate graduating.

Pollack will also miss the teachers she has had in the past, many of whom she has grown close to.

“The teachers are so invested in Decatur… the connections I make with teachers at UGA probably won’t be the same as the ones I made in Decatur,” she said. 

Despite her grievances, Pollack cherishes many high school experiences. She has created many memories through running cross country and playing lacrosse since freshman year.  

“[playing lacrosse and running cross country] was an incredible experience because I met so many people through those sports that I didn’t really know before,” Pollack said.

Pollack will miss the atmosphere at school football and baseball games.  

“[At baseball games,] you get to bring a blanket and dress cute… I’m not really sure why but I just love love love baseball games.” 

Pollack never thought the video would help, but it showed her that she has a lot to look forward to. 

That includes a tentative graduation ceremony on August 1st.

“It might not happen but well see… I think just looking to the future really helps,” she said. 

With college drawing nearer, Pollack is worried about the change from balancing work at home to balancing work at school.

“It’s going to be a huge change, It’ll be harder to balance everything while at college because I’ll probably be tempted to go out to dinner when I need to do work.”

In addition to this,  the pandemic will make the whole college experience different for everyone, not just the freshman class. 

Pollack infers that: “I’ll probably have to quarantine in my dorm, the cafeteria will be grab-n-go, and there will probably be no football games.”

Worrying about her freshman year not being ideal puts her hopes down, so she tries to think positively about the situation. 

Despite her worries, Pollack has always been prepared for whatever college will bring with her love of independence and being outgoing. 

“When my sister Kate and I were little and leaving for sleepaway camp with our friends, I remember being so excited. When our parents dropped us off for the first time, I remember my friends being sad that their parents were gone but Kate and I were not afraid to go out on our own,” she said. 

Emily (left) with her twin sister Kate (right).

Pollack is also excited to meet new people and have the college experience, even if it’s not ideal to begin with. 

“I’m a really big fan of the typical college rom-com movies and shows with the big football games and parties, I’ve just always had an idea of what college was going to look like.”

Although Pollack has fears about what college will bring during this time, she’s ready to go out on her own and have her own college rom-com experience.

Click here to watch Emily’s video.