Still scrawny, but I’ve grown: a senior reflection


Patrick Hatzis

Patrick Hatzis on his first day as an MC freshman vs. Hatzis as he prepares to graduate

Wow. Four years went by in what seems like the blink of an eye. 

It is crazy to think that it was four whole years since I was a scrawny 4’ 11” freshman who went red in the face any time anybody talked to me. (Some might say at 5’9″ I’m still scrawny.)

Coming into Mount Carmel, I knew no one because nobody from my grade school was coming to MC and very few kids I knew from my neighborhood were going either and was tasked with integrating myself into different friend groups that were already there because of grade school connections. Having to make new friends, while at the same time being extremely self conscious of my appearance and very busy with sports and other out of school events, it was a difficult task. But at the same time, having to make new friends and enter uncomfortable situations has helped me so much and prepared me for future situations. 

I recall in July of 2018 meeting a senior as an incoming freshman, shaking his hand with my eyes glued to the ground, and face red as a tomato. And Mr. Bill Nolan, our assistant principal, looked at me and told me to shake his hand again, but the second time I looked him in the eye. This was when I knew I was going to go on a journey in my time at MC, and in fact, it was a very good one. 

One thing Mount Carmel does excellently is preparing students for life after high school. I have progressed and changed so much as a person from the time I entered MC to now. And that is because of everything from the experiences I’ve had, the people I’ve met, and the things I’ve learned inside the doors of MC. One thing that is so unique about MC is how it is not just a school but  a brotherhood. The faculty not only teaches you academically, but they teach you how to be a better person and a better man. And I guarantee, if you ask any senior about how they have changed and progressed as a person in their four years, they would not be able to put into words how much MC has done for them. 

Although I do appreciate all the things MC has taught and all the life experiences the schools have prepared me for, I also appreciate all the fun times and experiences it has given to me. I think high school should be a fun experience just as much as a learning one.  Honestly, I cannot recall having more fun than being in the student section of the football games in the state championship season or playing  with my teammates and friends on the soccer team. I still remember every chant we have done in the student section, every time we scored a goal, and every moment I have had at MC. I will cherish those memories for as long as I remember them. 

Looking at myself now, I can proudly say I have completely changed from freshman year. I can happily say that I no longer care about what people think about me. I can say I am comfortable with who I am and happy with who I am as a person. I can confidently say that I have learned so much over the past four years, and that is largely due to my amazing time at MC. From going red every time a teacher spoke to me, to asking the most questions out of everyone in the room, or from being scared to talk to people, to wanting to talk to new ones, MC has helped me completely transform who I am for the better.  

I feel this year has been the perfect end of my journey here at MC. Everything I have gone through, everything I have learned, and everything I have worked towards over the past four years has come together this year. I’m happier than ever, and feel ready to tackle whatever my future holds. 

A lot of people say places like Los Angeles, Paris, New York, and Tokyo are the best places on earth, well clearly those people have never stepped foot near 6410 S. Dante.