The transition from graduating seniors to new staff can be a long, bittersweet process for the wide range of clubs and groups here.
The beginning of the change in officers usually begins a few months before the end of the school year with interviews and applications. As seniors prepare for graduation and college, they, as well as sponsors of the club, begin the selection process. “Although the process is nerve-racking when you’re applying, once you’re elected as an officer, it is really interesting to participate in new officer selection,” sophomore and member of stage crew/vice president of the Red Cross Club, Val Zhao said.
Students in these clubs know the usual selection process well. “They elect you based on your attendance, seniority, and how much you help out,” sophomore and member of the National Art Honors Society, Wootton Activists and Stage Crew, Avana Wang said.
The selection process is simple. An application is filled out, and students may or may not be called in for an interview, depending on their qualifications and experience. “The main purpose is to get everyone involved, and new officers allow members to get to know new people and get closer with them,” Wang said.
The students of the club handle the applications and selections of officers, usually with a teacher or sponsor of the club. “At the end of the year, if there’s seniors, we will send out applications and people will apply for the positions they would like to hold,” Zhao said.
As new officers should already be familiar with the tasks, the shift in power doesn’t usually take long. “It’s usually a pretty smooth and easy transition between the staff, in terms of position,” Zhao said.
Students who are elected/chosen for each position must be able to handle the responsibilities they are tasked with. Usually, training or a test is given to the new officers to make sure they will be held accountable for the effects of their actions. “When I was selected to be vice president, I had to organize an event with the new officers to make sure I could handle it,” Zhao said.
Officers are not only tasked with important decisions and jobs, but also manage the other student members in the specific group or section of the club. “One of the most important things is that the students are enjoying being a part of the club and having fun, in addition to getting their work done,” Zhao said.
For seniors, the process is packed with emotions. Watching new officers take their place is bittersweet. “Although I don’t hold a leadership position in the group, I’m a member of the Spanish Honors society…it’s sad to see the underclassmen take over for the seniors,” senior Aritra Jindal said.
Underclassmen also tend to get emotional with the departure of seniors, who they look up to for guidance. “The end of the year is always sad because people are leaving,” Zhao said.