AVID Students Succeed

According to Dictionary.com, “avid” is defined as “having an eager desire for something.” People can be avid sports fans, avid musicians, or avid writers. But what does it mean to be an AVID student? Morris Hills High School has been fortunate enough to become part of the nationwide AVID program, with seventy-two AVID students currently at our school. This college prep program was put into place four years ago, and the first students to be inducted into AVID are graduating this year. The program was initially created to help individuals build habits that will help them to succeed in high school and in the future. AVID’s philosophy is to hold students to the highest academic standards possible and supply them with social and academic support in order to help them achieve their goals.

The Advanced Via Individual Determination program was developed in order to get students to think critically and to teach them to stay organized; the end goal is for them to be admitted to college and to continue this success throughout their college careers. The AVID students in this year’s graduating class are all planning to go to four year colleges, fully prepared to take on all challenges they will face using AVID strategies. AVID coordinator Ms. Barkocy states, “The material and tips taught have become ingrained into them, and eventually it’s become part of who they are as students. I do believe the AVID students will carry on all these habits into their future.” The students in this program have learned how to properly take notes by reflectively annotating what they write, which helps them remember the material being taught and makes it easier to prepare for tests. It’s the little things AVID students have learned that help them succeed. Graduating AVID student Casey Theriault says, “Going into high school I never really thought I would be able to take honors and AP classes, but being in AVID helped push me to that level.” Casey, who has received a scholarship from the University of Sciences in Philadelphia said, “It also has helped me with time management and my organizational skills as well, which will be of great use in college.”

The 2016 graduating class of AVID students is the first to represent this program at Morris Hills, and has created a stable foundation for the following students in AVID. Ms. Barkocy says, “Four of the AVID students that are seniors are currently tutoring the freshmen in the program and they’re able to help them adjust and teach them the AVID ways. It’s nice because the freshmen are able to see the program grow and what it could be in the end.” Administrators and students alike look forward to the continued success of this blossoming program.