Where Are They Now? Macey Shiff

Macey Shiff
Graduating Class of 2008

What do you remember about your high school graduation?

“I remember feeling as though I should have felt differently than I did. I was excited, sure, but I remember anticipating that I would internalize the change more. It didn’t “hit me” the way I anticipated.”

What do you miss about high school?

“I miss the consistency of it; knowing what I needed to do and when. I also miss the community that being in high school fostered. As you get older, it takes more and more effort to create and maintain meaningful relationships. In high school, seeing and doing so many things with the same people, that was almost inevitable. I also miss the possibility that came with it. After college, you’re kind of on this designated path that you have to follow.”

Are you continuing your education, working, or both? Tell us more about where and what you are doing?
“I would like to get my Master’s at some point, but not yet. Right now I’m living in Washington, D.C. and working with PBS as a web production assistant for their show, Religion and Ethics Newsweekly.”

Do you feel that high school prepared you for your work now? What has been surprising about work/school?

“Yes and no. I’d say high school prepared me for my job now because it led me to a college that I loved. But, some of the personal experiences I had in high school related to religion, faith, and ethics are very relevant to the show I work with and I even referenced a few in my interview! I feel so lucky and am incredibly thankful to be where I am today, but I still catch myself wondering, “what’s next?”  I recognize that looking forward is something that might never stop, which could be a good thing, but growing up we were taught: Get good grades so you can get into a good college. Do well in college so you can get a good job. Get a job and work hard so you can live comfortably. Now, here I am, and I thought I’d feel more accomplished. I suppose right now I’m searching for more fulfillment in my life and I had hoped that that would come when I got a job!”

Are you friends with the same people from high school and have you made new friends?

“I did maintain contact with a few people from high school, others I didn’t.  It’s incredibly different, especially in college, because you have to construct an entire new life for yourself! New people, new schedules, new everything! As I mentioned, in high school it’s so easy because you see everyone so frequently. It’s even harder, I think, if you go somewhere far. I was about 5 hours away in Delaware with no one I knew even remotely close by. Thankfully, I was able to revive strengthen some of my high school relationships after I graduated from Delaware. I met some wonderful people at Delaware, people who I would say know me better than I know myself. I’m hoping to create those kinds of relationships in DC, too!”

Have you seen the new renovations?

“Yes. I think they look nice, of course, but I also feel that those funds would have better served the school district elsewhere.”

Do you have any words of advice for current students?

“Nothing is permanent. In high school, things feel so significant and overwhelming. Yet years later, it all feels like a blip — if that! Along the same vein, try to appreciate things when you have them and as you experience them. Try to be aware of the relationships you cultivate and how they benefit both people involved. Friends, professors, romantic interests, etc. If you feel lost, seek guidance in whatever form you think would be best. It’s also important to remember that sometimes, you do just need to do things for yourself! For a career, find something that you’re passionate about and the rest will fall into place. Money can always be re-earned but you only get one shot at most experiences.”

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