Jacob Nakasone: Thank You Mililani

Jacob Nakasone, Online Editor

     Stepping into the gym for freshmen orientation, I was stoked. I was excited. I was also really immature, dumb, and lazy. I was looking forward to all of the things high school offered: Prom, Senior Luau, dances, graduation, high school sports, and most of all, making new friends. 

     Fast forward four years to this day, and a lot of these things have been stripped away from me as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. When I found out that graduation was cancelled, I felt a lot of emotions: confusion, anger, and sadness, to name a few. Most of all, I felt bittersweet at the fact that I couldn’t say goodbye to the amazing friends, faculty, and teachers that I made a connection with over what has been the best four years of my life. I hope that by the end of this letter, I get to resolve a lot of those lost goodbyes.

     I want to begin by saying thank you to the MHS soccer program. These past four years with the program have given me incredible memories, emotions, and friends from the boys and girls side of the soccer program. One of the biggest things I’ve taken away from high school soccer is that hustle and effort will always stand out over talent in the long run — I’m testimony to that. Quitting club soccer my Freshmen year was hard, but it gave me even more incentive to push myself harder in the off-season to compete with the state’s best players. You can have the best skills on this island but if you don’t put in the time and commitment to improving yourself, you will never find out what you’re truly capable of.

     Another thing I’d like to say my thanks to is Mililani Times and the wonderful memories I made. This class has given me life skills that I will forever be grateful for. I’ve learned many things, but one of the greatest things Mililani Times has brought into my life was confidence in myself. To meet with strangers alone and discuss a topic that’s dear to them is a special thing. To do this every week for the past two years is even more special. Being a reporter and student journalist has helped me grasp a better understanding of the idea that “every person is special,” and that every person has a unique story to tell. To all the people I’ve done news stories on, I want to say thank you for your time and help, and I hope you continue doing what you enjoy and love.

     Lastly, I want to give my thanks to Mililani High School and all of the wonderful programs, teachers, and classes this school has. Mililani is a powerhouse of a school. In athletics, we can compete in any sport for OIA and state titles. In academics, the AP classes offered and co-curricular/extra-curricular clubs are some of the best in the state. Programs such as marching band, color guard, robotics, the music department, the CTAA plays — Mililani has everything you could ever want as a student to be successful and have fun. For any incoming freshmen or students looking to try something new, I highly encourage you to put yourself out there at some point in your four years here. Join a sport, participate in multiple clubs, challenge yourself with AP classes — embrace the culture at Mililani, because it is a unique and special one.

     And last of all, enjoy every minute of high school. The friendships, the relationship drama, the late night homework sessions, the cramming, the awkward social events, the stress of applying to college — it will all eventually come to an end. I’m glad that I can say that I truly enjoyed every part of high school. Even when you fall down, there will always be a lesson in every mistake or problem you encounter. Be optimistic. Mililani is a special place, and there’s no other school I’d want to be an alumni of.

Thanks for everything,