Senior Spotlight: Melisa Bilgili


Photo courtesy: Melisa Bilgili

Ana Rodriguez

Having always been active in school, Melisa Bilgili has been on the basketball and volleyball team throughout all four years of her high school career. She is also the vice president of the Computer Science Club. After graduating from JFK, Bilgili plans to continue her education at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Below are some of the experiences she has garnered over the years as a high school student.


What will you remember the most from your high school experience?

All the friends I made and the experiences throughout my basketball season. Definitely the games I feel like I will remember [them] the most.


What’s a piece of advice you’d give to underclassmen that you wish you knew?

You should really care about school your freshman year because even though you may think your senior year and common applications are a long time away, and you can like, care about school in the future, it’s really hard junior year when your GPA is bad to bring it back up. To not stress over the small things, like don’t stress over the drama, don’t stress over friendships and relationships because they really do come and go. Try to make the best out of everything, because even though it’s cliche that time flies by, like it really does fly by really fast.


What are your thoughts leaving high school?

I’m pretty excited to leave high school and start a new chapter in my life, but at the same time, I’m pretty upset and scared because I just know I’m going to miss school, even though there was some bad parts to it, I know I’m going to miss the memories and all my friends and teachers that I have had. And I still miss middle school, that was four years away and that still seems like yesterday, so I can only imagine how much I’m going to miss high school in the future.


What is your opinion on distance learning during your senior year?

It’s definitely not what I expected my senior to look like, and honestly I kind of hate it because I’m really unmotivated to do school work. I still get it done and still study and try to learn, but it just makes it really hard and it’s just boring, but I’m just trying to make the best of it because it is my senior year.


What would you say to your freshman self looking at you now?

I would definitely say that I came a long way from freshman year and that I grew a lot from the mistakes I made, even though as a person I feel like I stayed the same, I definitely matured and I stopped taking things so seriously and to heart, and I started caring about school more so I would say that I’m proud of myself.


You spent quite a while in JFK. If you could change anything about this school, what would it be?

If I could change something about the school, it would be to have pep rallies and more exciting assemblies to get people more hyped up for games and to really help create like a student bond, because I see other schools on like social media and I feel like their pep rallies and stuff get the students so hyped up, and I feel like that isn’t something we really have in the school, so that’s something I would want to add.


How do you feel you’ve changed from freshman year to senior year?

I feel like freshman year I was really carefree about everything and immature. I took a lot of things way too seriously and thought like if one thing didn’t happen my way it would be the end of the world. Now I feel like, especially after quarantining, I really got to like be more mature and like learn about myself, and I really realized small things don’t matter that much and now that it’s my senior year i feel like throughout the years i’ve changed, because like again, I started caring about school more and I started realizing that you don’t have to like everyone or be liked by everyone. And just having your small group of friends is honestly the best.


If COVID had never happened, what do you think your senior year would’ve been like?

I feel like my senior year, it definitely would’ve been way different. For example there would’ve been more football games and the football games would’ve been way more fun, and then I feel like there would be more big gatherings for clubs or like sports, and I would’ve already been done with volleyball season and we would’ve had a senior night and the same with basketball. We still have our senior night in two weeks, but obviously without COVID it would’ve been with parents and an audience, and I don’t know, I feel like it would’ve just been better. I’m not saying like my senior year is bad, but I feel like it just would’ve been more exciting in a way and especially with school memories and running of the halls and just making memories in school as being a senior. I feel like I’m definitely missing out on that and so are all the other seniors which kind of makes me sad.