The Last Falcon to Leave the Nest

The point of view of the last sibling to leave for college.


Stella Bordone

Sophia Miller, Abby Kavanagh, Lilly Spilker and Karli Kirchenheiter are preparing for their final moments in Severna Park High school. Miller, who is the last member in her family to leave for college after her sister Alex Miller, is ready yet sad. “I think being the last one to leave for college is bittersweet.” Miller said. “My sister is also graduating from college this year, so I think it will be hard for my parents to become empty nesters but also an exciting time in our lives as we prepare for the next chapter of our lives!”

Stella Bordone, Staff Writer

Being the last sibling to leave for college can be overwhelming. After seeing all of your other siblings depart for different colleges, you might think you are prepared to let go of the home you grew up in. Not only is it crazy for the kid leaving, but it is extremely emotional for the parents. Years of raising your family, seeing them go one by one to pursue a future and grow up, all until you get to your last kid. The last kid you will watch go through the college application process, the last kid to have high school sports games and the last kid to walk across that graduation stage to accept their diploma.

Once that last child graduates high school and goes to college, research shows that families can really struggle ( It could make you and your spouse realize that your child held your family together. On the other hand, it could help parents grow a stronger bond and focus more on their relationship.

Senior Karli Kirchenheiter, who is planning on attending University of Louisville next year, is the last Kirchenheiter to leave her childhood home. With four other brothers and sisters leaving to go to colleges like University of South Carolina, Clemson, and Louisville throughout the years, she has been through this process more than once.

“After watching my four older siblings go off to college, each time I would feel a little more sad when the house got quieter,” Kirchenheiter said. “While they were off living a separate life, I couldn’t wait for them to come back for breaks. It’s surreal that I am finally going to be leaving the house and I think my parents will definitely feel the effects of that.”

However, parents can take advantage of this time to spend quality time together.

“I think my parents will be really sad to not have a house full of children, but they will take advantage of the opportunities to travel to alot of my college games,” Kirchenheiter said.

Senior Andrew Myers is being faced with a similar situation. With his sister attending Auburn and his brother at Virginia Tech, he is the last sibling to leave his childhood home. “Our family dynamic is going to change,” Myers said. “With my mom and I being the only ones at family dinners, as my dad worked later nights, soon enough it will just be my parents. I think it will take some adjusting, but they have been through this with my brother and sister.”

As this is a bittersweet moment leaving the childhood homes we know and love, it opens new and exciting opportunities. We are going to be faced with challenges that our parents have hopefully prepared us to overcome. Now is the most exciting time in our lives, and although it’s emotional to grow up, your parents are always going to support your future.