Kickapoo High Quarterly

KHQ TODAY

Kickapoo High Quarterly

KHQ TODAY

Kickapoo High Quarterly

KHQ TODAY

A Costly Experience

Senior year is glorified as the pinnacle of high school, but everyone’s too quick to throw money at it.
Graduation+and+prom+are+two+of+the+most+expensive+senior+activities.
Graduation and prom are two of the most expensive senior activities.

   Many people look forward to their senior year of high school. As the final year of over a decade of work, it’s natural to celebrate the end of that era. However, the amount people are expected to pay for the experience is absurd.

   From portraits to prom, senior year can cost hundreds of dollars. It’s traditional for a student to have two separate photography sessions, one in the fall and one in the spring. While the pricing differs based on the photographer, their experience, and the package, it’s typical for students to spend at least $100 per session. 

   When going to prom, those planning on renting tuxedos can spend $100-$200 on their outfit while people in dresses can spend anywhere from $50-$600 on the dress alone. This doesn’t include hair, makeup, nails, or accessories students might spend money on for an event that’s overpriced. 

   When it’s finally time for graduation, grads can dawn their class ring, which is $250 on the cheap side. Put on the cap and gown, $20 without any additions, and walk for a diploma. But the cost doesn’t end there, now it’s party time. In 2024, the average cost of a party for one graduate is roughly $1,130 for 60 guests. 

   Wanting to have the senior year experience is only natural. It’s the version of last year that’s been popularized in the media, but this year is too much like the last to be spending thousands of dollars on an experience that could be forgotten in the next decade. This isn’t something that’s new, but rather it’s a form of overconsumption that’s been expected of seniors since the first ever graduation.

  I truly don’t believe that people will ever stop pouring money into their experience, but it’s important to be understanding when people don’t want to or can’t afford to.

   It’s unethical to judge those unwilling to spend hundreds of dollars on a dress or their next photo session when they could put it toward food, bills, or college. 

   $1,700 is what it costs to have the cheapest possible version of your senior year. This is an unsustainable and unreasonable amount of money for temporary memories and throw away photos.

 

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Kat Owsley, Social Commissioner