Leadership: they don’t just make posters
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Everyone contributes, but sometimes those that serve us are taken for granted. From new Nike’s to a free education, the magnitude of what we have gets swept up by the busy metropolis of high school. One story that endures over the years is a tale of dedication. Dedication is such a simple action, but has amazing abilities to change people, Sunset, and the world. It’s an action embodied by student Leadership.
With around 38 student in the class, Leadership represents a broad spectrum of ages, interests, and course loads. This fearsome and seemingly tireless group spends all their 5th period as well as AT time doing whatever it takes to make the mundane high school experience extraordinary.
During class, Leadership shifts into a thriving organism that places students in real world positions where deadlines are unchangeable, and money becomes a harsh reality.
“After Mrs. Buell gives the overall announcement of the big event that week, Johnson and I (Student Body President and Vice President) go over to each committee where they share out what they are going to do that day,” says senior and four year veteran Sehel Tahir, “We have a board with everything that needs to get done on it so everyone in class knows what’s going on.”
Each committee is made up of an All Student Body (ASB) members and delegates. These groups range from ASB President, Dance, Technology and Film, Assemblies, Activities and Sports, Secretary and Treasurer, Art, Publicity, Philanthropy, and Diversity. The committees put on dances, Cram the Stands, every single assembly, make the football bookmarks, punch cards, organizes and leads Random Act of Kindness Week and so much more.
“The work for Leadership does come in waves” says Tahir.
Homecoming is considered by Leadership to be the craziest time of the year. Creating a theme, making posters, kidnapping the court, making decorations, and hiring a DJ transforms the Leadership schedule drastically.
ASB President Johnson Lin remarks, “We stay behind Thursday after school, Friday after school, and come in Saturday morning. In total it comes to about 17 hours in those three days.”
“Unpaid,” adds Tahir.
But even during its peak seasons, these students forge on, while they grapple sports as well as a fourth of them who also have full IB schedules.
“I’ll stay up until 12:30 at night and go to sleep. Then I’ll get up at 4:00 AM to keep studying so, it feels like I’m just taking a nap,” says junior Ruchi Vora, first year Leadership student.
“Last year I developed a binaural sleep schedule so I could be more efficient with my time. I’d get home between 5:00-8:00 and I’d sleep for three hours, then I’d work until 4:00-5:00 in the morning,” says Lin.
“Ethan Paek and Ethan Uehara have stayed up until 2 AM just editing videos for assemblies” says senior and four year veteran Chris Guske.
Just as one event begins to die down, they are launched into the next upcoming activity. There is not a lot of glory that comes from being in Leadership. Except for the applause at the assemblies, these students remain the unsung heros of Sunset. But without that thank you, these students keep on working because of that one word: dedication. Dedication for something that they love, each for their own individual reasons.
“You don’t just talk about it; you take action to be the change you wish to see,” says junior and three year veteran David Chen.
“Leadership honestly is just a ton of fun,” says Vora.
“It has given me great opportunities. The ability to run Cram the Stands and raise over $11,000, we can see the impact we can make, especially for good causes,” says Guske.
“I think a lot of the value I put on Leadership are the friendships that have come out of it. It’s like a little family,” says Tahir.
These students are making a change at Sunset, whether people acknowledge it or not. They care about the Apollos and their well being, often over the sake of their own. Sunset has a reputation: it’s a community that will be a statistic to prove all others wrong. A redefinition of the modern high school experience. All because of a simple saying that Leadership strives to teach.
“Everybody has a story.”