Driving On Your Own: Step on the Gas

Passing the road test comes with relief and even more responsibility; that freedom is critical now more than ever.


With a flourish, Alyssa Varga, 12, shows off her car keys.

Jessica Velcheck, Bear Hub Staff

Perhaps one of the most anticipated opportunities in one’s high school career is the chance to learn to drive. From Driver’s Ed in sophomore year, to the hugely anticipated road test- moving through the process iss something that the onset of COVID could not stop for long. Though the road test looks a little different and the rise of the virus delayed many exams, students were pushed through and are now earning the privilege to drive on their own.

Seniority comes with a lot of extra baggage, but that’s a pretty well-known fact by now. The newfound freedom that comes with a probationary -or regular!- license is thrilling for many, and a break from the characteristic stress. “It has opened up more independence from my parents that I didn’t have before,” writes Kristina Kerschner, 12. “I am always eager to drive somewhere on my own.”

And getting away from parents? It’s exactly what stressed seniors need during a period where everyone is primarily in their homes. What once had to be achieved through relying on a parent’s good graces can now be done independently. Want to go grab some food? You can drive yourself there. Have a job? You can leave right after your shift and not be waiting on anybody but yourself. It’s much easier to operate on one’s own schedule with a car, and that allows seniors the critical ability to start feeling out their adulthood preferences. And, it allows individuals in households to breathe.

All in all, being able to drive helps ease the mood during COVID days, and allows for the exercise of independence. For a grade that is a hop, skip, and a drive away from adulthood, nothing could be more important.

Deciding to have fun with taking photos, Alyssa poses with pride behind her car. Getting to drive is pretty good.