Humans of LQHS: Valeria Rivera on balancing school and work


Courtesy of Valeria Rivera '21; Design by Nicholas Hernandez

Nicholas Hernandez, Reporter

Students have learned more about themselves during the pandemic and more about life and how it shouldn’t be taken for granted. 

This year has been especially hard on seniors, who have not been able to do all the things a senior in high school should be doing, like going out, hanging with friends, and making plans for prom. 

Valeria Rivera ‘21 is one of these students at La Quinta High School. Like most seniors, she does not know what she wants to do with her life after high school. Though, she does plan to attend College of the Desert to study psychology.

She has been struggling with anxiety even before the pandemic, but she found it was more noticeable after being home all the time. So she decided to find a job.  

From noon to 8 to 9 p.m., Rivera folds clothes, checks items out for customers, and wipes shopping baskets for people at the Marshalls in La Quinta, Calif. 

The job is definitely both mentally and physically draining.  

She then arrives home around 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. and jumps right into her school work. 

But when a teacher assigns so much work due two days after it is assigned, it’s hard to keep up. “It is just too much work to be given especially during a pandemic, which is stressful enough,” said Rivera.

Her anxiety sets in when she sees that the homework assignment is due at midnight and feels she has to rush to it before she showers or eats.

“It’s just when I feel like I’m not in control of things and that I can’t control the situation,” she said, “and that makes me super nervous when I don’t know what’s gonna happen.”

To control her anxiety, she watches TV and relaxes in her bed with a snack. Ever since she started working, she hasn’t had much time to relax. 

Although Rivera struggles to balance school and work, she still manages to keep her cool and pushes herself to work hard—with her friends and little sister behind her, motivating her to keep going.

Humans of La Quinta High School is an ongoing series featuring Blackhawk students and staff. Follow us on Instagram @humansoflqhs and Twitter @lqhawkview