Patriot Ambassadors meet monthly to plan virtual events


Photo courtesy of Emma Helgeson

Patriot Ambassadors gathered before middle school visits last year.

The student leadership program, Patriot Ambassadors (PA), was established in 2001 when the school was being renovated. The group helped students find their classes but later expanded their role in helping first-year students and new students adjust to the school.

This year, PA consists of more than 100 students and meets monthly through Zoom to plan virtual events. Members are also working on teacher and student outreach. “PA is a leadership organization that embodies the sense of spirit and community of [this school],” according to the PA website.

The group aims to help build student involvement in the school and provides incoming students and parents a positive experience as they select courses for their first year. “We provide a friendly face for new students coming into the building,” Co-Sponsor and social studies teacher Anne-Marie Steppling said.

Students involved in PA organize various events other than new student orientation, including graduation, Back to School Night, Puttin’ On the Hits, Thursday Night Live, school visits, and the club expo. “[PA] is a space for my student leaders to meet and collaborate as well as brainstorm ways for the Patriot Ambassadors to support administration and students at Wootton High School,” Steppling said.

Being a PA allows students exposure to opportunities they otherwise would’ve never experienced, like ushering during graduation or participating in color wars during boot camp. Being a part of PA enabled Secretary and junior Josh Freedman to develop new friendships and become a school representative. “PA has exposed me to so many new and wonderful opportunities in high school, and is by far one of the best highlights of my high school career so far,” Freedman said.

Students can apply to become a member of PA toward the middle of the year. After their application is submitted, potential members wait to be offered a group interview conducted with groups of five applications in January.